When you have a cavity, you’ll experience fairly consistent pain in that one tooth. However, tooth sensitivity causes a sharp, throbbing pain that can occur when any of your teeth are exposed to extreme temperatures or sugar. Tooth sensitivity can also affect more than one tooth, depending on whether the sensitivity is caused by the erosion of tooth enamel or exposure of the root in the tooth. Here are a few ways you and your general dentist in River West, Chicago can alleviate the pain caused by tooth sensitivity.
Treating Tooth Sensitivity Pain at Home
You can start to alleviate tooth sensitivity by switching to a toothpaste with a desensitizing agent. Most toothpastes of this type use potassium nitrate, because this compound blocks the pain signal from traveling from the nerve in the tooth to the brain.
Use a Non-Alcohol Mouthwash
Instead of rinsing with water, you should use a fluoride mouthwash to add an extra layer of protection around your teeth and gum tissue. In particular, a mouthwash that does not contain alcohol is preferred, because the alcohol contains sugar that will cause sensitivity pain.
Gargle With Salt Water
If you experience sensitivity pain during the day and it’s not possible to brush your teeth, you can still alleviate the pain. Mix about 1/2 teaspoon of salt with a cup of lukewarm water. Take a mouthful of the mixture and swish it around in your mouth for at least 30 seconds before spitting it out.
How Will a Dentist Treat Your Tooth Sensitivity?
Repair Damaged Teeth
If you consistently experience tooth sensitivity, you should visit your dentist as early as possible. The pain may be caused by a cavity, lost filling, or a cracked tooth. In these situations, surgical procedures that include root canals, inlays, and crowns can repair the problem.
Treat Gum Disease
In some cases, tooth sensitivity is the result of gum disease that has caused the gum line to recede. When this happens, the root of the tooth is exposed to bacteria, sugar, and extreme temperatures. Your dentist can apply a gum tissue graft to bring the gum line back up to a healthy position, so you won’t experience that sensitivity any longer.
Apply a Fluoride Gel
In some cases, the sensitivity is caused by the thinning of the enamel on your teeth. This is typically caused by applying too much pressure when you brush, or by using a hard-bristled toothbrush. If this is the case, your dentist will apply a fluoride gel, which remains on the teeth for five minutes. The gel will help strengthen the enamel, while also blocking pain signals from being sent to the brain.
As this overview suggests, tooth sensitivity is usually the sign of another oral health problem and it’s best you schedule appointment with your dentist. We are some of the best dentists in Chicago and as soon as possible will help you correct the problem before it worsens. Your check-up will identify any oral health problems you may be experiencing, and your dentist may help you come up with a more effective oral care plan.
Have A Dental Emergency?
American Dental is taking emergency dental patients during this difficult time. If you have pain in your mouth that required immediate attention, contact us!
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