Do you feel a sharp “zing” whenever you eat ice cream or other cold foods? Maybe it’s a dull ache in your teeth anytime you drink hot coffee or tea. You’re most likely suffering from sensitive teeth. Though a common condition, sensitive teeth are the main symptom of gum recession and can sometimes be a sign that other oral health problems are lurking. If you’re experiencing the painful symptoms of sensitive teeth, seek the expertise of a periodontist for treatment. A periodontist is the expert in soft tissue treatments and will be able to diagnose the root cause of your tooth sensitivity and provide personalized treatment. In general, there are 2 different ways a periodontist can treat your sensitive teeth, depending on your case:
Gum Disease Treatment
Sensitive teeth and gum recession are two of the common symptoms of gum disease. If you have this condition, your receding gums and tooth sensitivity are a result of infection. This infection is caused by a buildup of bacterial plaque and tartar that irritate the gum tissues. As the gums pull away from the teeth, the sensitive tooth roots are exposed to hot and cold sensations, in addition to more bacteria and tartar deposits. Treatment involves eradicating the bacteria and infection from the mouth, removing the diseased tissues, and repairing damaged bone in more severe cases. Healthy gums can then be encouraged to secure around the tooth roots to reduce sensitivity.
You can have sensitive teeth and receding gums not related to gum disease as well. Gum recession can occur if you brush your teeth too aggressively, smoke or use tobacco, have crooked teeth, or your gum tissues have suffered trauma. Receding gums do not grow back on their own, so an effective treatment for this condition is gum grafting. During this procedure, soft tissue from another part of the mouth or a donor source is placed over the exposed tooth roots and sutured in place. When allowed to heal, this new gum tissue will create a tight seal around the tooth roots and protect them from sensitivity.
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