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When you eat something sweet, such as a piece of chocolate or a bowl of ice cream, your teeth may feel slightly sensitive and start to itch. Why is this happening? Sensitive teeth are one of the side effects of acid erosion.
When we eat acidic foods like citrus, soda, or some sauces, they begin to break down the surface of our teeth. This can lead to tooth sensitivity whenever you eat foods that can trigger it. If you’re looking for ways to reduce your tooth sensitivity to sugar, you’ve come to the right place!
This article will discuss why your teeth are sensitive to sugar and what factors make them more sensitive than others. Keep reading for more details and practical tips on protecting your smile from further damage and managing sensitivity if you already have it.
If you’ve ever bitten into a piece of cake and felt like someone just poured a glass of ice water on your teeth, you’ve experienced tooth sensitivity. Tooth sensitivity, or dentin hypersensitivity, is a condition in which the tooth enamel is worn away, exposing the dentin that lies beneath.
The dentin is a soft tissue that contains blood vessels, nerves, and connective tissue. The exposed dentin causes a burning sensation in the teeth when exposed to hot or cold liquids or foods. The soft tissue of the tooth can be exposed in several ways.
Brushing too hard can wear away the tooth enamel, exposing the dentin and leading to tooth sensitivity. Something as simple as losing a filling or damaging a tooth while eating can also cause the soft tissue to show through and make it sensitive.
When you eat something sweet, bacteria in your mouth produce lactic acid as they digest the sugars found in the food. While this happens in every person’s mouth, the process may be faster for individuals with low amounts of saliva. This is for people who suffer from dry mouth or have recently undergone tooth extraction.
The low amount of saliva means it can’t neutralize the lactic acid like it usually would, and it accumulates on the surface of your teeth. This damages your tooth's enamel, and you may experience tooth sensitivity as a result. The more sugary foods you eat, the more frequently you’ll have this reaction to foods.
Once the acid in your mouth reaches your teeth' dentin, it will create a burning sensation. Teeth with a soft gum line, have had root canal treatment, or are severely decayed are more likely to experience tooth sensitivity.
Many people experience mild sensitivity to extreme pain when their teeth are exposed to certain foods and beverages. The level of pain you experience when consuming something sugary directly results from how much enamel your teeth have left.
As the enamel wears away, your dentist will re-abstract your teeth and provide a protective coating so you can still enjoy your favorite snacks!
The enamel on your teeth is the hard, yellowish substance that protects the underlying dentin, the soft tissue that lies beneath the enamel. Tooth enamel is the hardest substance in your entire body and protects your teeth from daily wear and tear.
Once it wears away, the exposed dentin can become extremely sensitive to hot and cold liquids, sweets, and starches. If you don’t actively do something to protect your teeth from excessive acid, you will experience tooth sensitivity to sugar.
Teeth naturally lose enamel over time, and some people have naturally thinner enamel, which makes them more susceptible to tooth sensitivity. Tooth enamel loss is often caused by not brushing and flossing well, overeating acid, or having bad genes.
Sugar is the number-one culprit for tooth sensitivity. The more sugar you eat, the more bacteria in your mouth thrive and produce acid that removes tooth enamel. This leads to tooth sensitivity, which can be painful and embarrassing.
A tooth exposed to a loss of enamel is also at risk of cavities and gum disease. If it is not treated correctly, tooth sensitivity can become a chronic problem that lasts a lifetime.
While you may have gotten away with treating mild tooth sensitivity, it’s time to take action if your teeth become more sensitive.
There are several things you can do to avoid tooth sensitivity. First, avoid eating too many sugary foods. This is easier said than done, we know!
You can help reduce your tooth sensitivity by eating more fruits and vegetables, which contain less refined sugar and are better for your teeth. You can also brush and floss your teeth after every meal to reduce the buildup of bacteria and sugars in your mouth.
Regularly visiting your dentist and having your teeth professionally cleaned can also help you detect signs of tooth sensitivity before it becomes a significant problem.
The good news is that you can reduce tooth sensitivity with a few changes in your daily routine. Start by avoiding soft drinks, other beverages, and foods high in sugar; you can also rinse your mouth with water after eating to help remove excess sugars and bacteria.
Try using toothpaste that contains baking soda. This ingredient helps reduce the amount of acid produced in your mouth. Ask your dentist about tooth sensitivity treatments that can be applied to your teeth or put in your mouth as a mouthwash.
Now that you know how and why your teeth become sensitive, it’s time to take action! First, see your dentist at Serene Dental Center to ensure your teeth aren't hurting you in other ways.
Once you’ve received a clean bill of health and your teeth are protected, you can enjoy all of your treats without worrying about tooth sensitivity.
Visit Serene Dental Center, your one-stop dental health center in California, where you can find everything you need to protect your teeth and enjoy your favorite foods. From teeth whitening to sensitivity treatments, we have what you need to keep your teeth healthy and happy.
Serene Dental Center offers superior dental care. Discover what modern, state-of-the-art dental technology and a commitment to your comfort can accomplish for your smile. Serene Dental serves people in Mission Viejo and other Orange County locations.