Medically Reviewed
by Dental District
Medically Reviewed by Jilian Lopiano

Do you have tooth sensitivity? Have you ever felt discomfort or pain after drinking a hot coffee or eating ice cream? If so, you are not the only one! Many people suffer from this issue. High sensitivity when you eat or touch your teeth could mean severe tooth decay, which may need to be treated with a root canal, especially if the sensitivity persists and does not go away. 

What Is Tooth Sensitivity?

Tooth or teeth sensitivity usually occurs when the second layer under your teeth (the dentin) becomes exposed – which can trigger discomfort and pain. This happens due to erosion and gum recession (when our gums pull away from teeth). Tooth roots are made of thousands of tubules (small hollow canals) leading to your tooth’s center area (where the pulp is). These tubules make it possible for us to feel stimulated by hot or cold foods and beverages reaching the nerve in the tooth, which can result in discomfort. Sensitivity can also be a symptom of other issues such as cavities, cracked teeth, or gum disease.

Visiting the dentist for a periodic oral evaluation and teeth cleaning may provide the earliest warning signs of severe health problems. Once detected, the specialist would suggest the best type of treatment for you. Visiting the dentist twice or at least once a year is a small price compared to developing more significant health problems that can be painful and costlier long term.

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

Many factors can develop sensitive teeth, such as:

  • Gum disease. Inflamed gum tissue may cause sensitivity because of loss of the supporting ligaments, which exposes the root and leads to the tooth’s nerve. 
  • Cracked teeth. Broken or cracked teeth may fill with bacteria and enter the pulp, causing inflammation. 
  • Brushing too hard. Brushing too hard or using a hard-bristled brush can damage the enamel and expose the dentin. 
  • Teeth whitening products. Many teeth whitening products on the market can lead to sensitivity, such as activated carbon pastes or abrasive mouthwashes. If you want a whiter smile is highly recommended to get it done by a professional.
  • Plaque buildup. Accumulated plaque in the gums can cause swelling, which may lead to sensitivity if not attended. To prevent this, you should get a teeth cleaning twice a year.

How Do I Stop Sensitivity On My Teeth?

This is what you can do to reduce teeth sensitivity:

  • Maintain good oral health. Brush and floss your teeth daily to keep all parts of your teeth clean.
  • Use fluoridated dental products. Daily use of fluoridated paste can help decrease sensitivity since fluoride is a natural mineral that strengthens enamel, protecting teeth from decay. The best you can do is to ask your dentist about good oral hygiene products.
  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush. A soft-bristled brush has less abrasion to the gums and teeth. A hard bristled one can irritate your gums, causing bleeding and discomfort. 
  • Visit your dentist for a check-up. Visit your dentist at least once a year for teeth cleaning. If you feel that your teeth sensitivity is increasing even with these measures, we highly recommend to schedule an appointment with our team of dentists.

You May Also Like: Top 3 “Scariest” Dental Procedures (Which Actually Aren’t) 

What Is A Root Canal?

A root canal removes a tooth’s nerve and blood vessels to save it from extraction. This dental treatment is necessary when the pulp becomes inflamed or infected.

How Is The Root Canal Procedure?

This procedure involves the following steps:

  • Removal of the inflamed or infected root.
  • Cleaning of the inside of the tooth.
  • Filling and sealing the tooth with a synthetic material.
  • Restoration of the tooth by placing a crown over it for protection. 

When Is A Root Canal Necessary?

 These symptoms could indicate that root canal treatment is needed:

  • Severe toothache pain upon chewing or applicating pressure. 
  • Prolonged tooth sensitivity to cold or hot temperatures.
  • Darkening of the tooth.
  • Abscess in the jawbone (visible on an x-ray).
  • A bad smell or taste comes from the tooth. 
  • Swollen or tender gums on the affected tooth.

How Long Does A Root Canal Take?

Most of the time, a root canal can last one hour.

At The Dental District, you will find the best dentists in Tijuana at affordable prices. You can save up to 70% on dental treatments such as root canal or teeth cleaning. If you are experiencing tooth sensitivity, it is important to visit your dentist and determine the cause. The good news is that our specialists can help relieve your discomfort and maintain good oral health. Don’t let tooth sensitivity keep you from enjoying an ice cream or a coffee! Contact us and schedule an appointment today!

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