How are sensitive teeth treated?

If you have sensitive teeth, your dentist may suggest that you first try using a desensitizing toothpaste, which contains compounds that help block the transmission of sensation from the tooth surface to the nerve. Desensitizing toothpastes usually require several applications before the sensitivity is reduced. Look for dental care products  that display the American Dental Association’s Seal of Acceptance so you know the products have met ADA criteria for safety and effectiveness.

If desensitizing toothpaste does not ease your discomfort, your dentist may apply a fluoride gel to the sensitive areas of your teeth to strengthen your teeth’s enamel and reduce the transmission of sensations. If receding gums cause the sensitivity, your dentist may use agents that bond to the tooth root to "seal" the sensitive teeth. In cases where hypersensitivity is severe and persistent and cannot be treated by other means, your dentist may recommend a root canal to eliminate the problem.
There are several unrelated causes of tooth pain, so it is important to have your dentist perform a differential diagnosis to identify the root cause of your pain. There are certain kinds of toothpaste that help relieve dentin hypersensitivity. Your dentist will be able to recommend one for you, if this is his/her diagnosis. If desensitizing toothpaste is not enough, your dentist may recommend other treatments, such as a plastic sealant that will prevent the dentin from being exposed or a fluoride gel.
See your dentist if you have sensitive teeth. If cavities are not present, there are several treatments. First, a toothpaste for sensitive teeth may be prescribed. Second, fluoride rinses and gels may be prescribed. Third, fluoride varnishes and bonding agents that seal the teeth may be applied to the sensitive areas.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.