FAQ

Tooth Sensitivity FAQs:

  • What is tooth sensitivity?

    Dentin hypersensitivity or tooth sensitivity is a common dental problem that can arise when dentin (the inner part of the tooth) becomes exposed. It’s a condition that can develop over time as a result of common problems such as receding gums and enamel wear.

    See the Causes of Sensitive Teeth 

  • What causes tooth sensitivity?

    Tooth sensitivity can start when the softer, inner part of the tooth called dentin becomes exposed. Dentin lies under the enamel and the gums. Thousands of microscopic channels run through the dentin towards the centre of the tooth. Once the dentin is exposed, external triggers (like a cold drink) can stimulate the nerves inside the tooth, resulting in the typical short, sharp pain of tooth sensitivity.

    See What Causes Sensitive Teeth

  • How can I protect myself against sensitivity?

    Talk to your dentist about your symptoms. They can confirm that tooth sensitivity is the cause of your problem and advise you on how to care for sensitive teeth, like the best toothbrushing technique for you, how often and when. You can also  relieve the painful symptoms of tooth sensitivity by changing your regular toothpaste to a daily use toothpaste specially formulated to treat sensitive teeth, like Sensodyne®.

    Learn more about Ongoing Oral Care For Sensitive Teeth

  • What triggers sensitive teeth?

    A range of things can trigger a twinge or tooth pain for people with sensitive teeth. These are some of the most common triggers:

    • Cold foods or beverages
    • Hot foods or beverages
    • Sugary foods
    • Sour foods
    • Breathing in cold air
    • Brushing teeth 

    Learn more about Common Triggers of Sensitive Teeth

  • Is tooth sensitivity a common dental problem?

    Yes. Sensitive teeth may affect as many as 1 in 3 people, even young adults. Most sufferers are between 20 and 50 years old.

  • Is tooth sensitivity a sign of a more serious dental problem?

    There can be many different causes of dental pain other than tooth sensitivity. So if you're feeling any tooth pain or discomfort, especially if it persists, the best thing you can do is visit your dentist and seek professional advice.

    Learn more about Other Reasons for Sensitivity.

  • Can brushing too hard cause sensitive teeth?

    Brushing overly aggressively or more often than your dentist recommends can contribute to gum recession and wear enamel. Over time, receding gums and enamel loss can lead to exposed dentin and tooth sensitivity.

    Learn more about Other Reasons for Sensitivity

  • Can tooth whitening cause sensitivity?

    Tooth whitening here means whitening treatments carried out under the supervision of your dentist. These treatments contain bleaching agents (peroxide), which are known to cause sensitivity in some patients. This is not the same as dentin hypersensitivity, which happens as a result of having exposed dentin (the softer, inner part of the tooth). Ask your dentist about bleaching-related sensitivity if you are considering having a tooth whitening treatment.

    Learn about Whitening Treatments and Sensitivity.

Acid Erosion FAQs:

  • What is acid erosion?

    The wearing away of enamel, caused by acid in our diet, is called Acid Wear.  As few as four acidic foods or drinks throughout the day can put our enamel at risk from acid wear. If your tooth enamel is at risk, ask your dentist for advice on what foods to eat, how to consume the many acidic foods and drinks in today's diet and the best oral hygiene routine for you.

    Learn more at Pronamel.ca

  • What causes acid erosion?

    Over time, acidic foods and drinks can cause your teeth enamel to wear down. These include fruit and fruit juices, carbonated drinks, black coffee or tea, wine and anything that tastes sharp, like ketchup or salad dressing. To help protect your teeth against acid erosion, talk to your dentist and use a fluoride toothpaste specially developed for people at risk of acid wear, such as Pronamel. Ask your dentist for dietary advice on the best oral hygiene routine for you and the best way to consume the many acidic foods and drinks in today's diet.

    Learn more at Pronamel.ca

  • Can acid erosion cause teeth sensitivity?

    Yes. Acid erosion can contribute to enamel wear. Enamel is the hard outer layer of a tooth. Although it’s harder than any other substance in the body, with time it can gradually be worn away to expose the layer of dentin beneath, which may lead to tooth sensitivity.

    Learn about Enamel Wear

Common questions about toothpaste for sensitivity

Sensodyne® Toothbrush