Tooth Pain/Sensitivity

Tooth pain

Description: Feelings of: sharp shooting pains, dull aches, or strong and steady pain in or around a tooth. Pain can vary in degress, from a very minor annoyance to an unbearable ache.

The source of tooth pain can come from a number of things, most commonly an irritation of the nerves within the roots of teeth due to dental caries (cavities), infections of the dental pulp, or fractures of  root of the tooth. Other common causes of tooth pain include gum and bone infections, or inflammation from wisdom teeth.

While there are natural at home remedies to treat the pain, it is vital to visit a dentist for evaluation and treatment of the source of the pain. When left untreated, cavities can continue to decay, affecting a larger area, infections can worsen and require additional treatments, and gums can become very swollen and painful.

Tooth Sensitivity

Description: Sensitivity is characterized by a tingly feeling or a flash pinch of pain affecting one or more teeth. The sensation associated with tooth sensitivity can occur consistently or intermittently.  Intermittent tooth sensitivity can be triggered by hot and cold food or beverages, when cold air hits the teeth, or when an object contacts the teeth.

Sensitivity usually results from the root nerve of the tooth being affected.  This can occur various ways, including: gum recession, acidic liquids (such as soda) that cause enamel wear and dentin exposure, tooth grinding (in which case all teeth feel sensitive), brushing teeth too hard, which may cause enamel loss and dentin exposure, gum disease (periodontitis), or a chipped or fractured tooth.  Also, as we age, enamel (the outer tooth surface) naturally wears down, exposing the dentin (the initial inner tooth surface) and causing sensitivity.

Solutions: Treatment options for sensitivity include prescription fluoride rinses, gels and toothpastes, or in-office desensitizer to provide relief.. More severe cases may require bonding or other types of restoration such as porcelain veneers or crowns.