How does sensitivity happen?
There are several causes for sensitivity, since dentine can be exposed in a number of ways.
- You may have a broken or cracked tooth, or you may have a hole as a result of tooth decay which now needs a filling.
- Over-brushing your teeth (too hard or for too long) can wear down your tooth enamel.
- Acidic food and drink can erode your enamel.* Receding gums can slowly expose the root of your tooth, which doesn’t have an enamel layer. This can occur naturally or through gum disease, including gingivitis.
- Poor-quality cosmetic teeth whitening treatments can cause damage to your enamel.If you grind your teeth, you can wear away your enamel or even the whole tooth.
Can tooth sensitivity be treated or avoided?
- Make sure you have regular check-ups with your dentist and see your hygienist whenever you’re referred.* Follow your dentist’s or hygienist’s advice for looking after your teeth at home.
- Visit your dentist as soon as you suspect you may have a problem such as a cavity, a cracked tooth or a change in your gums. Treatment can stop things getting worse.
- Your dentist might recommend a fluoride gel, rinse or varnish. These can gradually build up the protective layer of your teeth.* Avoid sugary, fizzy and acidic foods and drinks.
- Don’t brush your teeth from side to side – instead, use small, circular motions.Looking for a dentist to help you with sensitive teeth?
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