What Is the Difference Between Tooth Sensitivity & Pain?
Tooth sensitivity is very different from tooth pain, and understanding the difference between these two sensations is important for people in deciding whether to make an emergency visit to a dentistry office in Greenwood, IN.
According to Dr. Kim Alexander, a general dentist at Alexander Dentistry, sensitivity is typically a sensation that is generalized throughout the mouth, as opposed to being centralized in one main spot. Tooth pain, meanwhile, is usually a throbbing or aching feeling in one section of the mouth or one particular tooth.
Centralized tooth pain is often an indication of an infection, and as such Dr. Alexander says it is important that people suffering from this sensation come in to a dentistry office in Greenwood, IN, immediately. Even in instances where an infection has not set in, Dr. Alexander says tooth pain can still indicate a small cavity that needs to be checked out. If the cause of the pain a patient is suffering from is root exposure, then Dr. Alexander may recommend a simple dose of desensitizing medication applied directly to the affected tooth.
Tooth sensitivity can be more difficult to diagnose and treat than tooth pain, since it is more generalized in nature. The primary causes of tooth sensitivity reported at general dentistry practices in Greenwood, IN, are root exposure, cracked teeth, tooth wear and genetics. Some people simply have teeth that are more sensitive than others, says Dr. Alexander, and there is nothing they can do to change that.
While less common, Dr. Alexander says it is also possible for people with small cavities to complain of generalized tooth sensitivity. As a cavity in a tooth gets larger, it can grow into the nerve and ultimately an infection will set in. Dr. Alexander explains that it is always best to treat cavities before they become infected to prevent any potentially painful side effects and conditions.
The key to preventing tooth sensitivity are routine check ups and professional dental care. Dr. Alexander believes that it is important for patients to make sure they are brushing and flossing each morning and night. People who believe they may be grinding or clenching their teeth need to get that condition checked out by a professional, since nighttime grinding can lead to crack lines and sensitivity. The most common recommendation for people with this condition is to wear a custom-made night guard.
For more information on preventing tooth sensitivity, Dr. Alexander recommends visiting her dentistry office in Greenwood, IN.
Greenwood, IN 46142
*Disclaimer: The information on this website is not intended to substitute for the medical expertise and advice of your healthcare provider. We encourage you to discuss any decisions about treatment or care with an appropriate healthcare provider.