Short lived tooth sensitivity, particularly cold sensitivity, is not normally a cause for concern. However, if the pain persists and appears to be limited to a particular tooth or area of your mouth it may be indicative of a crack in your tooth, a broken or degraded filling, a cavity or an infected nerve.
Pain upon chewing and to cold and heat can be a sign of an infected nerve that requires root canal therapy.
Sensitivity in your teeth can also be a sign of gum disease, also known as periodontal disease. This type of gum infection has the potential to destroy supporting bone and result in loss of teeth. Periodontal disease can result in gum recession and ultimately require cosmetic dentistry to restore a natural appearance.
Tooth grinding or clenching (bruxism), brushing too hard and chewing tobacco can also lead to sensitive teeth. Bruxism can be due to stress, sleep apnea or other problems. See our section on bruxism under our “services” pull-down menu.
If a tooth is sensitive due to a crack, ignoring it can lead to total fracture and loss of that tooth. Replacement often requires a dental implant or a dental bridge.
Solutions to tooth sensitivity can often be simple if the problems are addressed early. Therefore, if you are having any type of dental pain or toothache it is important that you call Dr. Steven Levy at your earliest convenience at 516-378-8600.