Edmond Dentist Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS Exposes the Root Cause of Tooth Sensitivity

Edmond DentistCommunity Blog Online: We’re very excited to talk with you today. Thank you for making time; we know you’re very busy.

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: I’m never too busy to help people understand important dental concerns.

Community Blog Online: We’d like to touch on the subject of sensitive teeth…

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Tooth sensitivity is more common than you’d think. In fact, most people experience tooth sensitivity at one point or another in their lives.

Community Blog Online: When does it typically occur?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Tooth sensitivity usually rears its ugly head when teeth are exposed to hot or cold.

Community Blog Online: And what exactly causes it?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Teeth can feel sensitive when the gums separate from the enamel exposing the dentin underneath.

Community Blog Online: What is dentin?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Dentin is a layer of soft material under the enamel. It contains thousands of tiny capillaries that have a direct path to the tooth’s nerve center.

Community Blog Online: So it’s the exposed nerves that are actually causing the sensitivity?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: That’s right. Teeth will be more sensitive any time the dentin isn’t protected.

Community Blog Online: Does regular “wear and tear” weaken the enamel?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: It can, especially for those using a hard-bristled toothbrush or who grind their teeth at night.

Community Blog Online: How does bacteria cause tooth pain?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: If bacteria is introduced to the pulp, it can cause inflammation and swelling.

Community Blog Online: Do at-home teeth whitening products contribute to tooth sensitivity?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: They do, actually. Moderate to severe tooth sensitivity is often reported during the first few days of the whitening process.

Community Blog Online: So let’s say the enamel is damaged. How can I fix it?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Unfortunately, tooth enamel damage is permanent.

Community Blog Online: Do certain foods trigger sensitivity?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Highly acidic foods and beverages can corrode the enamel. It’s best to avoid these foods altogether or rinse with water after consumption.

Community Blog Online: So someone with tooth sensitivity just has to learn to live with it?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Not necessarily. Teeth may feel less sensitive if the damage is halted.

Community Blog Online: How does that happen?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Use only a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush with gentle pressure. For those who clench or grind their teeth, a fitted mouth guard can help significantly.

Community Blog Online: Are there special toothpastes people with sensitive teeth should use?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Toothpaste made specifically for sensitive teeth can help block the sensation of pain when used regularly.

Community Blog Online: Are fluoride treatments an option?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: Yes, they are. For more advanced cases of sensitivity, we can apply a fluoride gel in the office to help strengthen the remaining enamel.

Community Blog Online: What about the worst cases of sensitivity? How are those treated?

Dr. Damon R. Johnson, DDS, Edmond dentist: When sensitivity is the direct result of a major tooth problem like decay, a crown may help. In severe cases, the best treatment option may be a root canal.

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