Odontoblastic Process

Tooth sensitivity is a common name for dentin hypersensitivity or root sensitivity. If hot, cold, sweet, very acidic foods/drinks, even breathing in cold air, are uncomfortable, then you have sensitive teeth. Tooth sensitivity is very common and approximately 50% of the population experiences it. Tooth sensitivity can come and go over time. Tooth sensitivity is caused by dentin or root areas exposed. Receded gums are very common and up to 80% of population has gum recession by the age of 65.

When the root is exposed the inner nerve layer of the tooth can feel the change of temperature in the mouth. We never experience this sensitivity with the crown of the tooth because the upper areas of the tooth are protected by enamel.  

Dentinal hypersensitivity due to loss of enamel in the crown of the tooth can be caused by, aggressive brushing, and using abrasive toothpaste. Other factors include: tooth wear resulting from clenching or grinding, gingivitis, periodontitis, scaling and root planning, malocclusion and dietary habits (i.e. acidic foods).

A Phoenix Dentist, at Atrium Dental we will look for potential areas where the roots are exposed and identify the teeth that are sensitive. Once the teeth are identified a treatment plan will be made. There are many treatments available for tooth sensitivity including: home medicaments, in office fluoride treatment, application of tooth desensitizers, laser treatment, bonding, gum graft.

At Atrium Dental, Dr. Foroughi, Phoenix Dentist, will recommend combination treatment method which includes laser treatment with in office fluoride application. Low-power laser therapy has been shown to promote bio-modulatory effects, minimizing pain and reducing inflammatory processes. Fluoride varnishes contain calcium fluoride that provides a layer to shield the area and reduce dentinal sensitivity. It’s been suggested that laser therapy works by reducing sensitivity by coagulation of protein without altering the surface of the dentin.  Studies have shown the combination use of laser irradiation with chemical agents such as sodium fluoride and stannous fluoride can enhance treatment result by 20% per application.

If you are experiencing tooth sensitivity and are interested in laser treatment, please call 480-940-4321 for a limited or complete examination with Dr. Foroughi, a phoenix Dentist. Examination will include x-rays to rule other causes of sensitivity.