Regarding your dental health, the two most primary elements are your gums and teeth. It can be easy to take them for granted until, of course, your mouth is suddenly in pain. This can happen for a variety of reasons, including increased gum and tooth sensitivity. If you can tell the difference between tooth and gum sensitivity, you can start applying the right treatment to your weak spots. Read on to learn the differences between these two types of sensitivities.
Gum sensitivity refers to some type of irritation originating from your gums. If you think you have sensitive gums, look for a few symptoms to be sure. Often, gum sensitivity results from gingivitis, which is the early stage of gum disease. You may have gingivitis if you have swollen and tender gums or gums that bleed easily and create bad breath. As gingivitis progresses, receding gums increasingly appear.
Plaque is often the leading cause of gum sensitivity as it builds up along the gumline. If left untreated, it can advance to gum disease. Other causes of gum disease include diabetes, tobacco use, crooked teeth, and sometimes even pregnancy.
If you find yourself wincing when brushing or flossing certain teeth, or feeling pain when eating or drinking cold items, hot, acidic, or sweet items, you may have sensitive teeth.
Tooth sensitivity has many causes, including cavities and tooth fractures, receding gums, worn down tooth enamel, exposed tooth dentine, loose fillings, and gum disease. Grinding your teeth, brushing them too hard, and the overuse of mouthwash are additional actions that can create sensitive teeth.
Treatment and Prevention Tips
Fortunately, although tooth and gum sensitivity can lead to severe issues, they are both treatable and preventable. The best way to prevent sensitive teeth and gums is to practice good, regular oral health. This includes brushing twice a day with toothpaste that prevents plaque and gingivitis. Flossing and maintaining a nutritious diet also helps prevent gum disease.
You can treat sensitive teeth with desensitizing toothpaste and fluoride gel. If the issue is more serious, your dentist can recommend more permanent treatments. Discuss with your dentist the best way forward regarding your sensitive teeth or gums.
Keep Your Smile Healthy with Affinity
While these tips can help with some tooth and gum sensitivity issues, we know the best way of correcting the problem is to visit your dentist regularly. Affinity Dental, located in Catonsville, MD, has six dentists and provides a variety of services from pediatric dentistry to orthodontics. Affinity Dental is capable of meeting all your needs. With 170 combined years of treating a variety of dental needs, Affinity is committed to providing quality dental care. To get your teeth back into good health and make your smile bright, call us at 410-719-7900 or contact us online. For other useful tips on dental care follow us on Facebook and Twitter.