Sensitivity to cold is the most common type of tooth pain but usually does not indicate a dental emergency. Often hypersensitivity can often be treated with just a few adjustments to your routine and diet.
The crown of the tooth is the area above the gum line and is layered similar to a hard-boiled egg. The outside of the tooth has a hard enamel coating or shell, next is the softer dentin layer, and within the dentin lies the nerve of the tooth. When the enamel shell is damaged, temperature changes cause the tooth’s nerve to react.
Enamel can be damaged through wear and tear, cracks, and cavities exposing the dentin. Sensitivity can also occur if the gum line recedes and the dentin on the roots of teeth are no longer insulated by gum tissue. When dentin is exposed it can cause hypersensitivity to cold, acidic and sweet foods.
If the sensitivity only occurs when eating or brushing, try using a sensitivity toothpaste daily. It may take a couple weeks for sensitivity to subside, but with time it should decrease in severity. Avoid whitening toothpaste, brushing too hard and very acid foods. If the sensitivity persists, visit Dr. Katie Hicks to see how we can help!
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