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Sensitive Teeth Explained by Dr. Jeanne Taylor of Austin-Central Dental

Sensitive teeth often are a result of receding gums.  When the gums recede, the root of the tooth is exposed.  The root of the tooth is not covered by protective enamel; it is covered by softer cementum, which can erode easily when exposed.  When erosion of this surface occurs, open dentin tubules below the surface are exposed, allowing stimuli (cold, heat, air, sweets, touching) to cause a momentary sharp pain.  This is also called dentin hypersensitivity, says Dr. Jeanne Taylor of Austin Central-Dental, located at 3410 Far West, Austin, TX.

The physiological explanation of sensitive teeth, or dentin hypersensitivity, is that stimuli create a pressure change within the fluid that fills the dentin tubules, and the movement of the fluid is then transmitted to nerve fibers to cause pain.  For more detailed information about this, you may read ……..


 How can sensitive teeth be prevented? 

1.  Rinse with water after eating or drinking acidic substances.  Acidic  (low pH) foods and drinks can remove a “smear layer” after a few minutes of exposure, making the tooth more susceptible to erosion.

2.  If you have “dry mouth”, try to restore the lost saliva.  (Saliva has a naturally buffering effect of acid in the mouth.)  There are medications that can help.

3. Use a soft toothbrush, and brush with gentle pressure.

4.  Treat reflux disease.  Gastroesophageal reflux disease and eating disorders can lower the pH environment of the mouth.

5.  Limit “whitening” your teeth–do it for shorter periods of time, use a whitening agent with a weaker concentration, include a “protective agent” with your whitening routine (talk with Dr. Taylor about whitening products for sensitive teeth).

If you have sensitive teeth, or any tooth problem, Dr. Jeanne Taylor invites you to make an appointment and discuss possible causes and treatment options.   Dr. Taylor’s office is located in Cental Austin at the corner of Far West Boulevard and Mopac (3410 Far West, Ste. 320, Austin, Texas 78731. Call 512-343-2425