Sensitive teeth | Oral Health Foundation


What are delicate tooth?

Having delicate tooth can imply something from getting a gentle twinge to having extreme discomfort that may proceed for a number of hours. It can be an early warning signal of extra severe dental issues.

Who suffers from delicate tooth?

Many individuals endure from delicate tooth and it could begin at any time. It’s extra widespread in folks aged between 20 and 40, though it could have an effect on folks of their early teenagers and when they’re over 70. Ladies usually tend to be affected than males.

What causes delicate tooth?

The a part of the tooth we will see has a layer of enamel that protects the softer dentine beneath. If the dentine is uncovered, a tooth can develop into delicate. This normally occurs the place the tooth and the gum meet and the enamel layer is way thinner. Listed below are some causes of sensitivity:

  • Brushing too laborious (‘toothbrush abrasion’), and brushing back and forth, may cause enamel to be worn away – significantly the place the tooth meet the gums. The freshly uncovered dentine could then develop into delicate.
  • Dental erosion: that is lack of tooth enamel brought on by assaults of acid from acidic meals and drinks. If enamel is worn away, the dentine beneath is uncovered which can result in sensitivity.Gums could naturally recede (shrink again), and the roots of the tooth will develop into uncovered and will be extra delicate. Root surfaces shouldn’t have an enamel layer to guard them.
  • Gums could naturally recede (shrink again ), and the roots of the tooth will develop into uncovered and will be extra delicate. Root surfaces shouldn’t have an enamel layer to guard them.
  • Gum disease: a build-up of plaque or tartar may cause the gum to recede down the tooth and even destroy the bony assist of the tooth. Pockets can kind within the gums across the tooth, making the world troublesome to maintain clear and the issue worse.
  • Tooth grinding: this can be a behavior which entails clenching and grinding the tooth collectively. This could trigger the enamel of the tooth to be worn away, making the tooth delicate.
  • A cracked tooth or filling: a cracked tooth is one which has develop into damaged.
  • Tooth bleaching: some sufferers have sensitivity for a short while throughout bleaching or afterwards. Discuss to your dental staff about this earlier than having therapy.

When are tooth extra more likely to be delicate?

You usually tend to really feel the sensitivity when consuming or consuming one thing chilly, from chilly air catching your tooth, and typically with sizzling meals or drinks. Some folks have sensitivity once they have candy or acidic meals and drinks. The ache can come and go, with some occasions being worse than others.

Is there something I ought to keep away from if I’ve delicate tooth?

You might discover that sizzling, chilly, candy or acidic drinks, or meals like ice cream, can deliver on sensitivity, so chances are you’ll wish to keep away from these. In case you have sensitivity when brushing your tooth with chilly water from the faucet, chances are you’ll want to make use of heat water as an alternative. You will need to preserve brushing your tooth frequently – if you happen to do not, this might make the issue worse.

Do I have to go and see my dentist?

Sure, if in case you have tried treating your delicate tooth for a number of weeks and have had no enchancment.

What remedies can the dentist supply?

Throughout an examination the dental staff will speak to you about your signs. They may have a look at your tooth to search out out what’s inflicting the sensitivity and to search out one of the best ways of treating it. The dental staff could deal with the affected tooth with particular ‘de-sensitising’ merchandise to assist relieve the signs. Fluoride gels, rinses or varnishes will be utilized to delicate tooth. These will be painted onto the tooth at common appointments one or two weeks aside, to construct up some safety. Sensitivity can take a while to settle, and chances are you’ll have to have a number of appointments. If this nonetheless doesn’t assist, your dental staff could seal or fill across the neck of the tooth, the place the tooth and gum meet, to cowl uncovered dentine. In very severe circumstances it might be essential to root-fill the tooth.

Is there something I can do to deal with delicate tooth at dwelling?

There are numerous manufacturers of toothpaste in the marketplace made to assist ease the ache of delicate tooth. You must use the fluoride toothpaste twice a day to brush your tooth. You too can rub it onto the delicate areas. These toothpastes can take something from a number of days to a number of weeks to take impact. Your dental staff ought to be capable of advise you on which sort of toothpaste could be greatest for you.

How can I forestall delicate tooth?

  • Brush your tooth last item at evening and not less than one different time through the day, with fluoride toothpaste containing not less than 1350ppm (components per million) of fluoride. Think about using toothpaste specifically designed for delicate tooth. Use small, round actions with a soft-to medium-bristled brush. Attempt to keep away from brushing your tooth back and forth.
  • Change your toothbrush each two to a few months, or sooner if it turns into worn.
  • Do not brush straight after consuming – some meals and drinks can soften the enamel of your tooth, so go away it for not less than an hour earlier than you sweep.
  • Have sugary meals, and fizzy and acidic drinks, much less usually. Attempt to have them simply at mealtimes.
  • In case you grind your tooth, speak to your dental staff about whether or not you must have a mouthguard made, to put on at evening.
  • In case you are fascinated by having your tooth bleached, focus on sensitivity along with your dental staff earlier than beginning therapy.
  • Go to your dental staff frequently, as usually as they suggest.

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Want extra recommendation?

In case you want free and neutral recommendation about your oral well being, contact our Dental Helpline by e-mail or name 01788 539780 (native price name within the UK).

Our Dental Helpline is totally confidential and has helped nearly 400,000 folks since opening over 20 years in the past. Contact our specialists by phone, e-mail or on-line enquiry, Monday to Friday, 09:00 – 17:00.


Thanks to GlaxoSmithKline, who’ve kindly supplied us with an Educational Grant for this data. GSK’s assist doesn’t solely enable us to develop and preserve this recommendation on-line however signifies that we will proceed to supply this vital useful resource as a printed leaflet for dental practices and hospitals to hand out to sufferers and go away in ready areas.   



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