Check Up : Why do my teeth hurt?

February 21, 2017

Jenifer is a security officer who works at a business place in Kingston. She is experiencing a problem with some sensitive teeth and asks what the problem could be.

Whenever she eats or drinks hot or cold foods or drink, she feels a sharp, severe pain in her mouth.

Jenifer needs to take time off and visit a dentist. That said, there are several causes of 'sensitive' teeth such as:

- Wear and tear over time. Brushing the teeth too hard can result in damage to the teeth enamel. This can expose the dentine of the teeth, which is sensitive to hot and cold temperatures. The same can occur if the person grits their teeth a lot.

- Tooth decay can cause teeth to become sensitive, especially when the decay occurs near the gum.

- Gum disease (gingivitis), which causes inflammation of the gums which can retract and reveal the roots of the teeth.

- Build-up of plaque on the teeth.

- Acidic foods and drinks wear down tooth enamel and expose the sensitive dentine.

- Some people experience sensitive teeth after dental cleaning or other dental work, but this should soon settle on its own.

To reduce the problem of tooth sensitivity:

- Avoid eating hot and cold food or drinking hot or cold drinks.

- Avoid eating or drinking acidic foods and drinks.

- Brush, dental floss and rinse out the mouth several times a day.

- Use a soft-bristle tooth brush.

- Use a mouth guard at nights to prevent grinding of the teeth.

- See your dentist!

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