September 23, 2022

What Causes Teeth Sensitivity to Food or Cold

If you are one of the many people who experience tooth sensitivity, you know how annoying and frustrating it can be. Tooth sensitivity can make even the simplest things, like drinking a cold glass of water, seem impossible. The moment your teeth come into contact with anything remotely cold or hot, you feel a jolt of pain that can ruin your whole day. We'll discuss some of the things that may cause tooth sensitivity and solutions for treating cold sensitive teeth.

We understand how annoying sensitivity can be here at Taylorview Dental in Idaho Falls, Idaho. That’s why we want to help you find the source of your sensitivity and work with you to find a way to make it stop. With the help of our team, you can enjoy your favorite foods and drinks without pain. Schedule an appointment with us today, and let’s get started on finding a solution.

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

To understand how to treat cold sensitive teeth, it’s important to know what causes tooth sensitivity in the first place. There are a few different things that can cause your teeth to become sensitive.

  • Gum recession: Your gums protect your teeth by covering the roots. When your gums start to recede, the roots of your teeth are exposed. This can make your teeth sensitive to both hot and cold temperatures.
  • Tooth erosion: Acidic foods and drinks can cause tooth erosion. This can lead to exposed tooth roots and sensitive teeth.
  • Cavities: Cavities are another common cause of tooth sensitivity. When you have a cavity, tooth decay can reach the nerves in your teeth. This can make your teeth sensitive to both hold and cold stuff.
  • Brushing too hard or using a hard toothbrush: If you brush your teeth too hard or use a toothbrush with hard bristles, you can wear down the enamel on your teeth. The enamel is the hard, outer layer of your teeth that protects the inner layers. When the enamel is worn down, it can expose the inner layers of your teeth and make them sensitive. Grinding your teeth can also wear down the enamel.
  • Temporary sensitivity after a recent dental procedure: If you’ve had a recent dental procedure, such as teeth whitening, it’s normal to have some temporary sensitivity. This usually goes away after a few days.

Treating Cold Sensitive Teeth

Does tooth sensitivity to cold mean root canal? It may or may not mean root canal. Generally, treating cold sensitive teeth depends on the cause. You may need a root canal if the sensitivity is caused by tooth decay or an infection. During the procedure, the dentist will remove the infected or damaged tissue, clean and disinfect the tooth's inner surfaces and fill it. A filling helps ensure that bacteria cannot enter the tooth and cause another infection. 

If your sensitivity is caused by gum recession, your dentist may recommend a gum graft. This is a procedure where the dentist takes healthy gum tissue from another area of your mouth and attaches it to the gums around your teeth. This helps cover the exposed roots and reduces sensitivity.

You can also treat cold sensitive teeth with a desensitizing toothpaste. This toothpaste helps to block the pain signals that are sent to your brain when your teeth come into contact with hot or cold temperatures. You can get desensitizing toothpaste at most drug stores or supermarkets. Some other things you can do to reduce tooth sensitivity are:

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush
  • Avoid acidic foods and drinks
  • Be gentle when you brush your teeth
  • If you grind your teeth at night, wear a mouthguard
  • Maintain good oral health - Since tooth sensitivity is mostly caused by cavities and gum disease, it’s important to practice good oral hygiene. This means brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing daily, and visiting the dentist regularly. A qualified dentist can provide you with services such as professional cleanings and early detection of issues that can lead to sensitivity.

Does tooth sensitivity go away on its own? In some cases, it may go away without treatment. That's especially if it's caused by a recent dental procedure. But if the sensitivity is caused by gum disease or tooth decay, it's crucial to see a dentist for suitable treatment.

Don't let tooth sensitivity ruin your enjoyment of cold foods and drinks. Talk to our dentist in Idaho Falls, Idaho about what might be causing your sensitive teeth and find out what treatments are available. At Taylorview Dental, we'll conduct a thorough diagnosis and develop a personalized treatment plan to help you find relief. Call us today at 208-522-4491 to schedule an appointment.