You’re Hot & You’re Cold: What Your Puyallup Dentist Wants You To Know About Tooth Sensitivity
This holiday season in Puyallup, whether you’re biting into a warm piece of gingerbread cake, enjoying a spoonful of ice cream, or sipping on a cup of hot cocoa, if you feel a sharp, electric pain in your mouth: pay attention. It’s generally your mouth’s way of telling you that your teeth need to be looked at by your sedation dentistry practice as soon as possible. While 45 million Americans suffer from sensitive teeth, there are some occasions where sedation dentistry intervention may be required.
One of the most common reasons why you’re likely experiencing newfound sensitivity is because of dentin exposure. Dentin is the hard, dense tissue that lies beneath your enamel and forms the bulk of your tooth. Dentin contains millions of hollow tubes that are connected to nerve endings. When you consume something hot or cold (or acidic), those tubes fill up, delivering a strong sensation to your incredibly sensitive nerve endings, causing you to feel pain. There are several reasons why your dentin may be vulnerable, including tooth decay or gum recession. A filling can help stop the pain of a cavity, while gum recession can be treated at your Puyallup sedation dentistry clinic through periodontics.
Inflamed Tooth Pulp
If you’ve recently had another major dental procedure, or if your tooth decay has gone unchecked, your tooth pulp may become inflamed (known as pulpitis). There are several types of pulpitis, some of which are reversible and some of which are not. You may require a root canal, which is a procedure that can be carried out at your Puyallup sedation dentistry clinic. A root canal is similar to a filling. It will help repair the pulp and seal the remaining space, keeping you from further damage or pain.
Loose or Broken Filling / Tooth
Did you bite down on a piece of stale holiday fudge? Are you noticing sharp pains when eating other things? As outlined above, a filling is designed to protect your sensitive nerve endings from exposure. However, if a filling has become loose or if you’ve caused a fracture in your tooth through some other means, you may find it painful to bite down, or even consume hot or cold beverages. While it may be as simple as a filling to seal up the gap, you may also consider a CEREC crown. These crowns are custom-made, permanent coverings that protect a cracked or otherwise damaged tooth.
If you find you regularly grind or clamp down your teeth, you may be contributing to wearing down your enamel, the protective surface above your dentin. The more your dentin is exposed, the more pain you will feel. Chronic teeth grinding is known as bruxism, which can be attributed to a misaligned jaw, as well as sleep apnea. Speak with your Puyallup sedation dentistry professionals about options to treat your teeth grinding, including a custom mouth appliance.
The conditions above generally refer to a more sudden onset of oral pain. However, some people simply suffer from more sensitive teeth. Some teeth sensitivity comes from habits and conditions that contribute to the wearing down of enamel. For example, drinking highly acidic beverages or having acid reflux disease, or brushing your teeth too aggressively. If you suffer from general tooth sensitivity, you have options. Ask your Puyallup sedation dentistry clinic about desensitizing toothpastes and fluoride, as well as some of the other solutions mentioned here.