You’re enjoying a bowl of your favorite ice cream when — ouch! A sharp pain assaults your teeth. Lots of things can cause pain in your mouth, but one of the most common is sensitivity to hot and cold foods and beverages. This type of discomfort can put a damper on every meal and cup of coffee. What exactly causes tooth sensitivity? Your dentist in Tysons Corner lists 10 possible culprits behind your aching teeth.
1. Your Diet
What you put into your mouth affects your entire body, including your teeth. Hard foods and acidic foods can damage your enamel, exposing the sensitive dentin underneath. Try to avoid things like soda, sports drinks, and citrus fruits.
2. Aggressive Brushing
It’s great that you brush your teeth regularly, but it is possible to be too enthusiastic about your oral hygiene routine. If you brush too hard, those bristles can wear away your precious tooth enamel. The key to effective brushing is to use short, gentle strokes.
When was the last time you visited the dentist? If it’s been a while since your last checkup, you may have untreated cavities that you don’t know about. Those little holes in your pearly whites expose the dentin and cause you pain when you’re eating and drinking.
Everyone wants a whiter smile! Unfortunately, some over the counter products are a little too rough on your enamel. Even professional treatments can cause temporary sensitivity.
The hormonal changes that come with pregnancy can affect your gums, which can in turn lead to your mouth being more sensitive. Hopefully, the sensitivity will go away after your little one makes their debut into the outside world.
6. Other Gum Problems
Gum recession can expose your sensitive tooth roots, which don’t have enamel to protect them. Other gum problems, such as gingivitis, can also cause gum-related tooth sensitivity. Your dentist might be able to fix the issue through periodontal therapy.
7. A Split Tooth
If only one tooth is in pain when you bite down, it might be because it is split. This is considered a dental emergency and requires prompt attention from a professional. You may need a root canal and/or a crown.
8. Sinus Infection
A sinus infection can cause inflammation that contributes to tooth sensitivity. Your mouth should feel better after you treat the infection.
A high-stress lifestyle might cause you to grind your teeth at night. Applying that constant pressure to your chompers can wear them down and make them more sensitive. You may need to start wearing a mouth guard at night to prevent further damage.
10. Dental Work
Your teeth might be more sensitive after you have dental work done. This should go away a few weeks after your procedure.
Sensitive teeth? One of the above items might be the cause, but regardless of why your teeth hurt, your dentist may be able to help get your smile back in pain-free condition.
About Monarch Dentistry
Drs. Neil Flenniken and Suzan Rismani-Flenniken are happy to serve folks in Tysons Corner. If you’re struggling with sensitive teeth or have other oral health concerns, feel free to reach out to us at 703-714-7374.