You take a drink of cold water, bite down on something hard or touch a certain spot in your mouth with your tongue and – ouch! You’ve just found a sensitive tooth.

Not only is a sensitive tooth annoying, it can be worrisome, too. Sensitivity can be caused by a number of ailments, and if you’re experiencing sensitive teeth or gums, it’s always best to consult Drs. Ken and Marnie Collins at Collins Dentistry and Aesthetics in Spokane. However, it’s hard not to first consult with the internet, just to take a quick peek.

What Causes Sensitivity?

 Of course, sensitivity levels vary. If you’re experiencing extreme pain that’s preventing you from brushing your teeth or eating comfortably, you should schedule an appointment as soon as possible. But let’s break down a few common causes of tooth sensitivity:

  • Cracked filling. Unfortunately, cracked fillings aren’t uncommon. Especially for ice chewers, tooth grinders and those of us who love chicken wings (who can blame us?), cracked fillings can and do happen.
  • Gum recession. Periodontal disease causes gums to recede, exposing the root and causing tooth sensitivity. When caught early, the symptoms of periodontal disease can be reversed. Gums can also recede due to clenching and grinding; if you commonly clench or grind, try to be more mindful. Drs. Ken and Marnie Collins can provide some coaching to break the habit.
  • Brushing too hard. Brushing too hard can make your teeth sensitive; lighten up on the brushing, get a toothbrush with softer bristles or switch to an electric toothbrush and the sensitivity should clear up in no time.
  • Bruxism or clenching. Clenching and grinding the teeth wears away at the teeth, breaking down enamel. Ouch!
  • Plaque buildup. Get rid of plaque by practicing great at-home care of your teeth; brush twice each day and floss once a day. And, of course, come visit us at Collins Dentistry and Aesthetics twice each year to get your fluoride treatments and to provide that deep clean your teeth crave.
  • Dental procedures. Have we recently addressed an oral health issue? If you’re experiencing sensitivity after visiting us, it should clear up soon. If your teeth are still sensitive after a few days, reach back out; we’ll see if there’s a persisting problem.
  • Eating acidic foods. Like grinding and clenching, eating acidic foods like grapefruits and oranges, or drinking acidic drinks like coffee, soda and orange juice, can break down the enamel of the tooth. Switching to caffeine pills and cutting sugar intake can help protect that enamel and keep teeth sensitivity-free.

Bring Strength Back to Your Teeth

If you’re experiencing pain or sensitivity for any reason, Drs. Ken and Marnie Collins can help you restore your enamel and gums, protect against future harm and provide pointers on how to keep your mouth happy.

To schedule an appointment at Collins Dentistry and Aesthetics in Spokane today, or to inquire about your own tooth sensitivity or pain, please call (509) 581-4188 or click here to book an appointment online.