You are indulging yourself in a delicious scope of ice cream when… Oh, pain!
Do you know this feeling? If so, you are not alone. New research estimates that one in eight people have sensitive teeth. And though in some cases these painful sensations are occasional, in other – they could be a symptom of a persisting underlying problem.
But are people familiar with what sensitive teeth are caused by and what are the recommended therapies? We recently explored the awareness of over 1200 respondents about the most popular myths and facts on the topic. Find some of the results below to learn what are people’s thoughts and experts’ discoveries on questions like:
#1: Sensitive teeth are always the result of worn tooth enamel: MYTH
For 69% of DentaVox respondents, worn tooth enamel is the sole cause of tooth sensitivity.
Although true in a lot of instances, sensitivity can also be the result of numerous other factors. Some – like gum recession – are persistent and require permanent treatment efforts, while others – like teeth whitening – create unpleasant sensations just temporarily. Therefore, it is highly advisable to visit your dentist if you have sensitive teeth. This would make sure you are addressing the right cause and not the obvious symptoms.
#2: Only cold sugary foods cause sensitivity: MYTH
Survey participants are hesitant if ice cream or other cold sugary foods are the only triggers of tooth sensitivity with almost 50/50 dispersion of answers.
In fact, as previously mentioned, the causes can vary greatly. See below the most common ones.
#3: There are toothpaste types that help reduce tooth sensitivity: FACT
Can we relieve tooth sensitivity at home? According to the vast majority of respondents (86%), some toothpaste types might help.
And this is actually true. Desensitizing toothpaste can sometimes help block pain associated with sensitive teeth. It contains dental agents that make dentin less permeable and thus shield nerve endings from irritants.
#4: Brushing teeth as often as possible prevents sensitivity: MYTH
The common misconception that brushing teeth as often as possible can help prevent dental issues seem to be prevailing, as 60% of DentaVox survey participants believe it averts tooth sensitivity.
The truth: Brushing teeth regularly is crucial but over-brushing is dangerous. It causes tooth erosion especially when done immediately after high-acid food consumption.
#5: Deep cleaning at the dentist causes sensitive teeth: SO-SO
More respondents believe that undergoing a deep cleaning procedure at the dentist is also a cause of tooth sensitivity.
Experts disagree and warn that what you may experience is just a temporary post-procedure feeling that subsides quickly. What is the essence of deep cleaning and how it is different from regular cleaning, see on the image below.
#6: Tooth sensitivity is always temporary: MYTH
Depending on the specific cause, sensitive teeth might be a temporary or persistent issue. DentaVox research results show an even distribution of answers with a slight prevalence of people who think that tooth sensitivity is always temporary.
And even though sensitivity may come and go, make sure you pay attention to it early enough to minimize its negative effects.
#7: Soft-bristled toothbrushes are good for sensitive teeth: FACT
Jumping back to the topic of at-home reliefs for tooth sensitivity, don’t forget that your toothbrush plays an important role as well. According to 89% of respondents, a toothbrush with soft bristles is a good choice when you have sensitive teeth.
As a general rule, dentists tend to recommend soft-bristled toothbrushes in all cases to avoid harming the enamel (further). For people with persisting sensitive teeth, this is a must and even extra-soft bristles may be considered the best option. Consult with your dentist before deciding.
#8: Flossing causes sensitive teeth: MYTH
The majority of DentaVox survey participants (55%) recognize the assumption that flossing causes sensitive teeth as a myth. And rightly so.
Proper flossing can never lead to unpleasant feelings. Aggressive and/or badly coordinated flossing, however, can easily cause sensitivity pain. The key to flossing sensitive teeth is to be gentle.
#9: Fluoride therapy can help with tooth sensitivity: FACT
Can dentists treat tooth sensitivity? Yes. And – as also claimed by 66% of respondents – fluoride therapy may be one of the options.
Dentist-applied fluoride therapy can help strengthen tooth enamel and thus reduce the pain caused by over-sensitivity. What other treatment options are available, check out here:
#10: It is not needed to visit a dentist if you have sensitive teeth: MYTH
For 16% of DentaVox respondents having sensitive teeth is not a reason for visiting the dentist.
If you share this opinion… Please don’t. Your dentist is the competent authority that can detect the reason for your tooth sensitivity and can thus prescribe designated treatment.
Which of those myths and facts were you aware of?
Share in the comments below!
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Stats source: DentaVox, 20 Questions: Sensitive Teeth
Base: 1207 respondents (global sample)
Period: 03/09 – 20/10/2020