Sensitive Teeth

Published on February 7, 2013 by

Sensitive teeth can have several life altering consequences, from having to avoid cold water, not being able to whiten your teeth, passing on the ice cream or not brushing that area because it just hurts. By now it is a way of life and you really have no other option but to live with it; or do you?

We know that several things can cause sensitive teeth including:

  •      Tooth decay (cavities)
  •      Fractured teeth
  •      Worn fillings
  •      Gum disease
  •      Worn tooth enamel
  •      Exposed tooth root
  •      Clenching and Grinding
  •      Heavy Brushing

Our teeth have a hard outer layer called enamel that protects the inner layer called the dentin from stimulus that can cause nerve sensitivity. If the enamel becomes weakened or root is exposed your tooth can become sensitive. Once you loose enamel it will not grow back it is lost forever. The goal is to keep the enamel healthy and your gums clean so that you can protect the inner layer from sensitivity.

So what can you do to keep your teeth sensitive free and to help sensitive teeth.

First: Take preventative measures by using a soft bristle toothbrush. Medium and hard bristles can wear the enamel off. Also whitening tooth paste has hard abrasives that can wear the enamel.

Second: If you clench your teeth we recommend a custom fit night guard that can take the stress off your enamel

Third: Use Sensitive Fluoride toothpaste on the areas that have weakened enamel. When looking for sensitive toothpaste look for the active ingredient Potassium Nitrate.

Fourth: If the enamel is chipped, fractures or a filling came out the tooth might need a crown to cover the exposed sensitive area

Fifth: Your root might be exposed also causing sensitivity. We can cover the root with a gum graft to help with sensitivity.

Sixth: A tooth that is extremely sensitive might have a damaged nerve. If the nerve is damaged a root canal is needed to stop the sensitivity.

If you have sensitive teeth you can always come in for a consultation to see what we can do to help. Our goal is to help you have comfortable healthy teeth. Call for your Exam …

Dr. Harmon




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