Hot or Cold Sensitivity? Don’t Ignore the Possibility of a Cracked Tooth

Are you wincing when you sip your morning coffee or indulge in a scoop of ice cream? If your tooth is sending stinging signals in response to hot or cold substances, it’s time to pay attention. While tooth sensitivity can have various triggers, one potential culprit you shouldn’t overlook is a cracked tooth. 

At Cosmetic Dental Center, situated in Baltimore, our skilled professionals understand the woes of tooth sensitivity. Whether it’s a hidden crack or another underlying issue, our dedicated team is here to restore your comfort and preserve your love for your favorite foods and drinks.

The Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Tooth sensitivity, characterized by discomfort when your tooth encounters specific substances, can stem from multiple sources. Common triggers include sugary, hot, or cold foods and beverages. Some individuals might even experience sensitivity while brushing their teeth or using alcohol-based mouthwashes. Teeth whitening treatments, although effective, can also lead to heightened sensitivity.

However, among the chief contributors to tooth sensitivity is the presence of a minuscule crack, often invisible to the naked eye. This crack can pave the way for an array of discomforts, which is why it’s crucial to delve into its causes and solutions.

The Multifaceted Impact of Cracked Teeth

A tiny crack, imperceptible though it may be, can wield considerable power when it comes to tooth sensitivity. The reasons behind this are intriguingly diverse.

Vulnerable Pulp: 

A crack provides a pathway for external elements to infiltrate the dentin, the softer layer beneath your tooth’s protective enamel coating. This intrusion can extend to the pulp, the central part of your tooth connected to nerves and blood vessels. The result? A sudden, sharp pang of pain when you encounter hot, cold, acidic, or sugary substances.

Irritated Pulp: 

The act of chewing imparts pressure on your tooth’s enamel, which is typically robust. However, a crack disrupts this strength, causing the dentin and pulp beneath to become agitated. The resulting discomfort during chewing is a clear indication of a crack’s presence.

Bacterial Invasion: 

If tiny particles from your diet can breach a crack, so can harmful bacteria. Once bacteria settle within the pulp, infections and even abscesses can emerge, escalating the problem from sensitivity to a more critical stage.

Preventing and Addressing Tooth Sensitivity

Maintaining impeccable oral hygiene serves as your first line of defense against tooth sensitivity. Alongside daily brushing and flossing, regular dental appointments are pivotal. However, the technique you employ while brushing matters too – aggressive brushing can harm enamel and gums.

When tooth sensitivity strikes, prompt action is crucial to prevent further complications, particularly within the tooth’s pulp. Solutions range from desensitizing toothpaste to specialized fluoride treatments, which your dentist can recommend based on the root cause of your sensitivity.

Cracked Tooth: Treatment and Restoration

When a crack is the culprit, its size and potential pulp involvement guide the treatment approach. For cracks without infection, dental crowns, veneers, or bonding might be recommended to repair and reinforce the tooth. In cases with infection or abscesses, drainage procedures or root canals might be necessary to restore health while preserving the natural tooth.

Don’t let tooth sensitivity dampen your enjoyment of life’s pleasures. Those fleeting jolts of pain can often be silenced with timely intervention. Schedule an appointment with us at Cosmetic Dental Center to uncover the source of your sensitivity and embark on a journey towards a pain-free smile. After all, a comfortable and confident smile is truly priceless.


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We are pleased to offer a full array of cosmetic and restorative dental services to help each patient achieve optimal oral health and maintain a beautiful smile. Since 1981 our practice has been providing exceptional, comprehensive dental care to the Baltimore Area. We pride ourselves on maintaining a technologically progressive practice utilizing the latest advancements in patient care. Our newly renovated facility delivers a comfortable and stress-free environment, putting our patients at ease. Our caring and experienced staff, led by respected dentists, Anna Finkler DDS, and her associates, know our patients by name and considers them a part of our family. We would be honored for the opportunity to be of service to you and your family. Our goal is to provide patients with care that lasts a lifetime, and promotes happy, healthy smiles.

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