Understanding Tooth Sensitivity: Causes of Sensitivity

What Is Tooth Sensitivity?

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

Tooth sensitivity arises when the protective layers of your teeth are compromised, exposing the softer dentin beneath your enamel. Many factors can contribute to tooth sensitivity:

  • Overzealous Brushing: Brushing too hard or using a hard-bristled toothbrush can wear down your enamel, exposing the dentin and leading to sensitivity.
  • Teeth Grinding: Grinding or clenching your teeth can also erode the enamel and expose the dentin, increasing the sensitivity of your teeth.
  • Acidic Foods and Drinks: Regular consumption of highly acidic foods and drinks can slowly dissolve the tooth enamel, leaving your teeth more vulnerable to sensitivity.
  • Gum Recession: This exposes the root surfaces that lead directly to the nerves of your teeth, causing sensitivity.
  • Tooth Decay or Damage: Cavities, chips, or cracks can expose the dentin of your teeth, leading to sensitivity.
  • Dental Treatments: Certain dental procedures, such as teeth whitening, fillings, or orthodontic treatment, can cause temporary sensitivity.

How to Recognize Tooth Sensitivity?

The primary symptom of tooth sensitivity is a sudden sharp or intense pain when your teeth come into contact with specific triggers. These can range from cold air to hot or cold foods and drinks to sweet or acidic foods. This sensation can be temporary or persist over time, depending on the cause of the sensitivity.

Preventing and Managing Tooth Sensitivity

While tooth sensitivity is common, various ways exist to manage it and prevent further damage. The Dentist on Eglinton suggests the following strategies:

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to prevent enamel wear.
  • Be gentle while brushing and flossing.
  • Use toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth.
  • Limit the consumption of highly acidic foods and drinks.
  • Visit your dentist regularly for check-ups and cleaning.

Can tooth sensitivity be a sign of a more serious dental issue?

While tooth sensitivity isn’t typically severe, it can be a symptom of other dental issues such as cavities, a cracked tooth, or gum disease. It’s essential to consult with a dental professional if you’re experiencing prolonged sensitivity.

How long does it take for tooth sensitivity to go away?

This can vary widely depending on the underlying cause. Temporary sensitivity due to a dental procedure may subside in a few weeks, while sensitivity from receding gums may require more extensive treatment.

Is it normal for my teeth to be sensitive after a dental cleaning?

Some individuals might experience temporary sensitivity after a professional dental cleaning, but it usually subsides within a few days. If it persists, it’s advisable to contact your dental clinic.

Can tooth sensitivity be hereditary?

While tooth sensitivity isn’t hereditary, certain factors that contribute to sensitivity, like thin enamel, can be genetic.

Can children experience tooth sensitivity?

Children can also experience tooth sensitivity, particularly if they have cavities or consume many acidic foods or drinks. Regular dental check-ups are essential to monitor and address potential issues early on.

How does “Dentist on Eglinton” treat tooth sensitivity?

Dentist on Eglinton treats tooth sensitivity by first identifying its cause during a comprehensive examination. Based on the diagnosis, the team might recommend treatments ranging from simple solutions like special toothpaste or dietary adjustments to more involved dental procedures, if necessary.

Can weather changes affect tooth sensitivity?

Yes, weather changes, particularly extreme cold, can trigger tooth sensitivity. The cold air can reach the nerves through exposed dentin, causing discomfort or sharp, sudden pain.

If you experience this regularly, it may be a sign of significant enamel loss or gum recession, and you should consult with your dental professional. Dentist on Eglinton is always available to help manage your sensitivity and improve your oral health.


In conclusion, while common, tooth sensitivity doesn’t have to detract from your daily life. Understanding the causes and symptoms of tooth sensitivity is the first step in effectively addressing this issue. You can effectively manage tooth sensitivity and maintain dental health by implementing preventative measures and seeking timely professional care.

Dentist on Eglinton is always ready to assist you in your journey to a healthier, pain-free smile. Remember, with the right steps and dental partner, a life without the discomfort of tooth sensitivity is entirely achievable.

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