What causes tooth sensitivity?

Is it that a tooth that was completely healthy all of a sudden decides to start “acting up”? Why does tooth sensitivity suddenly occur out of the blue, with no warning or preamble? And what are the causes of this, how can you protect yourself against it? We at Italian Dentist in London basically see two main causes of tooth sensitivity, and you can brace yourself against both of them. Here is how it works.

 tooth sensitivity

Tooth sensitivity caused by tooth enamel problems

Teeth are complicated structures, and are not just a solid piece of material the way that people imagine them to be. They have a nerve ending in them, and are not solid either: they are hard cases of tooth enamel covered cementum that house a pulpy material called dentine that is in a pulp chamber underneath the cementum. This internal bit of the tooth does not like exposure to the outside world, and tooth sensitivity is very frequently the result of thin or worn-down enamel that is not doing its best at shielding the dentine and nerve ending from the outside world. In these cases cold drinks, or hot ones (basically a sudden change in temperature), pressure and even spicy foods can cause a sudden jab of pain.

Tooth sensitivity caused by periodontitis

Swollen gums and bacterial infections can also cause the teeth to become overly sensitive and react to all kinds of stimulus. This is because the nerves get pressed on by the gums swelling up, and thus certain stimuli, like pressure and hot foods, can cause the gums to swell up even more, pinching the nerve and sending a pain reaction. In these cases pressure is the most likely cause of the pain you are experiencing. Periodontitis is the most likely cause of swollen gums, as an infection of the gums causes the soft tissues to swell up as an immune reaction.

What to do if our teeth become sensitive?

The first thing to do is to go to a dentist so you can easily determine why you are experiencing the pain and sensitivity. If the cause is a lack of enamel, then you are “in luck”, as your teeth can be easily remineralised. You can have the dentist apply a fluoride ointment to the tooth itself, and you yourself can eat more fluoride and calcium, and this will probably decrease the sensitivity you are experiencing. If your tooth sensitivity is due to an infection, you need to take antibiotics, or have a deep cleaning session to remove the offending bacterial infection that is making your gums swell. Either way. The first step is to book a consultation session with a dentist.

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