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Dental Publications Sensitive Teeth: All you need to know
Nov 12 2021

Sensitive Teeth: All you need to know

What does sensitive teeth mean ?

Tooth sensitivity is the result of the worn of the teeth enamel or the exposure of the roots of the teeth.

The feeling of tooth sensitivity is described as a sharp, short-term sensation that experienced when sensitive teeth are exposed to very cold, hot, or sweet substances.

What does sensitive teeth mean

How do you know if your teeth are sensitive ?

If you experience pain or discomfort after eating or drinking something cold, hot or sweet then probably you suffer from Sensetive teeth.

Types of tooth sensitivity

There are 2 main types of tooth sensitivity:

  • Dentinal Sensitivity: Involves the dentine happens when the enamel or cementum wears way exposing the dentine.
  • Pulpal Sensitivity: refers to the pulp of the tooth it usually affects only a single tooth.

What causes sensitive teeth?

Below we discuss the possible reasons behind teeth sensitivity:

Shrinking gums and gum diseases

Gums recession is one of the most common causes of tooth sensitivity. Due to the exposure of the dentine.

Shrinking gums and gum diseases

Cracked tooth

Again for the same reason, a cracked tooth may cause severe discomfort, during chewing or consuming hot or cold foods, due to the exposure of the dentine.

Cracked tooth

Type 1 diabetes and sensitive teeth

Diabetes leads to a decrease in salivation which means a dry mouth increasing chances of tooth decay which results in teeth sensitivity.

Tooth sensitivity after filling

Teeth sensitivity to pressure, sweet or temperature after filling is a common issue, it resolves after a few weeks on its own.

Tooth sensitivity after crown

Tooth sensitivity after crown is normal, if this sensitivity persists we recommend visiting a dentist as soon as possible.

Tooth sensitivity after whitening

Also known as Dentinal hypersensitivity, it results from the whitening procedure itself because the whitening chemical exposes and enters dentinal tubules.

Tooth sensitivity after root canal

It is normal to face mild pain and sensitivity in the root canal-treated tooth, which usually wears off after 3-5 days, the sensitivity and pain are caused by the cleaning process.

Tooth sensitivity after wisdom tooth extraction

The sensitivity and pain are caused by the inflammatory reaction and pressure on the tooth, it usually fades away after a week.

Tooth sensitivity after veneers

Because of the procedure itself, this sensitivity may last up to a few weeks.

Tooth sensitivity after braces

Placement or removal of the braces may cause mild pain or sensitivity, in the case of removal it’s because of the exposure of the enamel after being covered by the brackets for a long time.

In the case of placement and adjustment, it’s due to the movement and adjustments of the teeth which usually disappear within four days.

How to fix tooth sensitivity ?

Here we shed some light on the possible ways to fix tooth sensitivity:

Fillings that cover exposed roots

Treatment depends on the causing factor:

  • Tooth decay: The dentist may remove the decayed area of the tooth and insert a filling.

If the decay is severe, more intensive treatment, such as a root canal, a crown, or a tooth extraction may be necessary.

  • Gum recession: Dentists may perform scaling and root planning, in severe cases gum graft may be needed.

Mouthguard to protect teeth if you grind

A Mouthguard is a protective and preventive measure to avoid teeth grinding, which may lead to erosion and damage, which ultimately causes teeth sensitivity.

Mouthguard to protect teeth


Sealants are coating material of the occlusal chewing surfaces of the teeth. To protect them from sensitivity and caries.


Toothpaste for sensitive teeth

According to a clinical study*, Colgate Pro-Relief has proven to be a better option for sensitive teeth than Sensodyne Rapid Relief and Crest Protection toothpaste in terms of reducing tactile and air blast dentine hypersensitivity.

Root canal for serious cases

If you are facing a sensitive tooth with severe pain and other treatments aren't effective,

It may indicate the exposure and involvement of the pulp dentist might recommend a root canal — a procedure used to treat problems in the tooth's soft core (dental pulp).


Sources: * NCBI

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