Sensitive Teeth


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Sensitive teeth are a problem for a lot of people. No one wants to suffer from sensitive teeth though. We’re here to talk to you a little bit about sensitive teeth and how we can help you.

? Why are my teeth sensitive?

We get this question a lot at our office. Tooth sensitivity occurs when gums have receded or when the tooth enamel is worn down or damaged enough to reveal the sensitive parts of the tooth.

The enamel is the hardest substance in your body and it’s located on the outside of the teeth. If the enamel becomes damaged (or the gums recede), the dentin layer of the tooth becomes exposed. Even though dentin isn’t as hard as enamel, it contains small tubules and pores that lead to the innermost part of the tooth– the soft, sensitive nerve of the tooth.

The tubules allow cold and heat to reach the tooth’s nerve, which causes hypersensitivity and shooting pain. That’s why people notice sensitivity when drinking hot or cold liquids, eating cold ice cream or other cold foods, and sometimes when breathing cold air.


? What can Washington Smiles do about sensitive teeth?

If you have receding gums, ask our dentists about proper brushing techniques to prevent further damage. We can also recommend certain toothpastes for sensitive teeth, as well as other products.

At your appointment we can thoroughly examine your teeth and gums to discover the underlying cause(s) of your sensitivity. We can address each cause in order to prevent further damage.

If gum disease is the root cause, for instance, we will provide gum disease treatment at our office. Fillings, dental bonding, or crowns may also be used depending on the cause of sensitive teeth.