What Can I Do About Painful Sensitive Teeth?

It’s common for teeth to randomly become sensitive or even painful from various issues. These issues can be as simple as the enamel being slightly worn away from the chewing surface or, as bad as a cavity. Whatever the reason, there’s are a few steps you or your dental professional can take to counteract the problem.

Toothpaste and Mouthwash

Tooth sensitivity is a pretty common occurrence in all ages. However, it’s often seen in adults more than children. This is because most sensitivity comes from the fact that, over the years, from normal wear and tear, enamel is worn away from the teeth. This causes teeth to become more sensitive. There are quite a few options, over the counter, for toothpaste specially formulated to combat tooth sensitivity. These can take up to a couple of weeks to really start making a difference however, they’re a great option that helps with basic sensitivity over time. There are some mouthwashes that also help with slight tooth sensitivity. It’s important to note that these options should only be used if the sensitivity is slight.

Ask Your Dentist

Of course, as usual, you’ll want to definitely ask your dentist if your pain or sensitivity is altering your day to day function. There are numerous reasons why you can have pain and sensitivity such as a broken tooth, cavities, decay, worn enamel, etc. The list is quite long. Some of these are no big deal and are a quick or easy fix. However, others will require more work to get the issue resolved. Whatever you do, don’t wait, especially if it’s inhibiting day to day functions as you can cause more issues to arise if you wait. Often times, without a professional, it can be about impossible to pinpoint the exact issue. Many times, if we do, we can’t fix it on our own.

Basic Tips

The best way to ensure our tooth doesn’t become overly sensitive or painful is by following a few basic tips for our day to day routine. Avoiding junk food or highly acidic foods is a big one. Junk food has ingredients that eat away at the enamel on the teeth and are high in sugar and ingredients that foster the growth of bad bacteria. With a good oral health routine, you can combat the effects of these foods however, even with a good routine, the effects of these foods can be detrimental.

Another mistake many people make is brushing too hard or using a brush that’s too tough for their teeth. It’s suggested that you use a soft bristled brush. If you don’t have a softer brush, be sure to brush more softly and with less pressure. This will ensure you don’t work away at the enamel on your teeth.

Overall, be sure to talk with your dentist to make sure there’s nothing else going on under the surface. Preventative dental work is always the best kind.


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Dr. Nguyen
Dr. Nguyen

Dr. Nguyen is committed to providing high-quality dentistry using state-of-the-art equipment to help you achieve improved oral health and the beautiful smile you deserve.

Dr. Nguyen has served on the Virginia Board of Dentistry and has many achievements such as: Invisalign Premier and Teen Provider, Pre-Fellow with Academy of General Dentistry, Graduate of Aesthetic Continuum, Engel Institute for Dental Implant Training, WaveOne Endodontic Training, HD President’s Club.

Dr. Nguyen enjoys spending time with his wife and three daughters, staying active in the gym, and trying out new restaurants.  When he isn’t at work, you can find him playing basketball, tennis, football, or hiking.

“I want to make you feel right at home, exceed your expectations, and provide an amazing experience!”