Texture, taste, temperature — all things that are part of the experience when you consume a delicious meal or sip your favorite beverage. However, sometimes the temperature aspect of foods and drinks can make your teeth hurt. You might even experience pain when cold air touches your chompers. What causes sensitive teeth in Plano, and how can you address this condition so you can go back to enjoying your favorite goodies without worrying about pain?
A tooth is so much more than a piece of bone. In fact, your enamel, the outermost layer of your teeth, is even harder than the bones throughout the rest of your body. However, as tough as enamel is, it isn’t invincible. Sometimes, this protective layer becomes worn thin.
Beyond your tooth enamel are microscopic tubes in the dentin (the second layer of your teeth). When thin enamel allows temperature extremes to stimulate the cells in those itty-bitty tubes, the nerve in your tooth sends a signal to your brain, and then — ouch! You experience a sharp pain.
But what causes enamel to become thin? Some possible culprits behind the pain include:
- Brushing too hard
- Not having a good oral hygiene routine
- Consuming too many acidic foods and drinks
- Grinding your teeth at night
Sometimes, though, thin enamel isn’t the problem. There might actually be some tiny cracks in that vital outermost layer of your teeth. These cracks may form when your teeth expand and contract slightly in response to extreme changes in temperature, and this exposes the sensitive inner layer of those pearly whites.
Some dental procedures can temporary make your teeth more sensitive. For example, while professional whitening is very safe, it temporarily makes the enamel more permeable — basically, that means that hot and cold sensations can sneak through it to the dentin. This type of sensitivity usually goes away within a few days.
Other work by your dentist in Plano might irritate the inner part of your tooth, causing it to swell and be tender. However, this type of tooth sensitivity shouldn’t last long either.
What Can You Do About Sensitive Teeth?
There are a few steps you can take to address teeth that are sensitive to temperature changes:
- Make adjustments to your oral hygiene routine. You might have to choose a new toothpaste that has a desensitizing agent.
- Cut back on foods that make your teeth hurt. Soda, coffee, ice cream, candy, and other things that are bad for your teeth are only bound to make sensitivity worse.
- Visit your dentist. Your dentist in Plano can help you figure out exactly why your teeth hurt and recommend a treatment to help get your oral health back on track.
Sensitive teeth are no fun! Thankfully, there are things you can do to take the ouch away.
About the Dentist
Dr. Anita Naik Madhav is your experienced dentist in Plano. She loves to serve the folks in her community and help them cope with all of their oral health issues, including sensitive teeth. If your pearly whites are feeling a little under the weather lately, please contact our office at 972-618-1111.