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Woman brushing teeth
If eating something cold like ice cream or sipping something warm like coffee causes you pain, you may be suffering from a common problem called “sensitive teeth”. Tooth sensitivity is caused by a number of things.

Some causes include:

  • Brushing too hard. Brushing too hard or using a hard-bristled brush can wear down your enamel. It can also cause your gums to recede.
  • Tooth decay near the gum line.
  • Recession of the gums. As gums move away from the tooth due to gum disease, the root surface becomes exposed.
  • Gingivitis. Inflamed gum tissue can cause sensitivity due to loss of supporting ligaments.
  • Cracked teeth. Chipped or broken teeth may fill with bacteria and cause inflammation.
  • Teeth grinding. Grinding your teeth can wear down enamel and expose underlying dentin.
  • Tooth whitening products.
  • Your age. Tooth sensitivity is most common in people between the ages of 25 and 30.
  • Plaque build-up. Plaque on the root surface can cause sensitivity.
  • Mouthwash. Long-term use of certain mouthwashes. Some contain acids that can damage the dentin layer of the tooth.
  • Acidic foods. Foods with high acid content can cause enamel to erode.

Some steps you can take to prevent sensitive teeth include:

  • Good oral hygiene.
  • Use a soft-bristled tooth brush. This will result in less toothbrush abrasion to the surface of your teeth and less irritation to your gums.
  • Use desensitizing toothpaste. There are several brands of toothpaste for sensitive teeth. With regular use you should notice a decrease in sensitivity.
  • Avoid highly acidic foods. Try not to eat highly acidic foods on a regular basis.
  • Use fluoridated dental products. Daily use of fluoridated mouthwash can decrease sensitivity.
  • Avoid teeth grinding. If you grind or clench your teeth at night, try using a mouth guard.
  • Visit your dentist regularly.

If you are experiencing tooth sensitivity, call Lakeway Center for Cosmetic & Family Dentistry to set up an appointment today.