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Why Are My Teeth Sensitive When I Chew?

Craig Goldin DDS Dec 13, 2016

Examining a patient’s teethThe teeth play an important role in the digestive system. They chew and break down food so that it can be swallowed. The teeth are protected by an outer layer of enamel that makes it possible for them to do their job without causing pain or discomfort. When chewing becomes difficult due to tooth sensitivity, it is most likely a sign of an oral health problem that requires restorative dentistry treatment to rebuild tooth strength.

Tooth sensitivity while chewing alerts our Troy, MI patients that dental care is needed. When sensitivity is present, our experienced team of dentists at the Cosmetic Dentistry Institute can diagnose the cause of the sensitivity and provide our patients with appropriate restorative dentistry treatment that will provide relief from this discomfort.

Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Chewing is the natural function of the teeth, and, therefore, one that should not cause pain or discomfort. Unfortunately, if the structure of the teeth is compromised, or if other oral health problems are present, this basic function can become difficult to perform. If biting, chewing, or other sources of force are causing tooth sensitivity, the teeth should be examined. Below are some of the most common causes of tooth sensitivity when chewing:

  • Damaged dental work: Many people have old dental work in the mouth. Fillings and crowns are built to be durable, but they won’t last a lifetime. If they become damaged, they can expose the nerves of the teeth and cause tooth sensitivity when chewing.
  • A chip, crack, or fracture: Even minor dental damage can increase tooth sensitivity and make it more difficult to chew. Chips, cracks, and fractures all have the potential to expose sensitive tooth tissues.
  • Tooth decay or erosion: Tooth decay and erosion are common dental problems. Although the causes of these issues are different, they both result in weakened or damaged tooth enamel. Compromised enamel is the most common cause of tooth sensitivity.
  • Gum recession: Many people fail to consider the health of the gums when it comes to tooth sensitivity. However, the gums play an important role in chewing. If the gums have receded or become inflamed as a result of infection, they cannot provide the stable support that the teeth need. The teeth may even become loose in their socket. Without proper support from the gums, the teeth can be very sensitive to the pressure of chewing.

Treating Tooth Sensitivity

Although tooth sensitivity is an uncomfortable oral problem, the good news is that it can usually be treated fairly easily. We offer an array of restorative dentistry treatments that can rebuild tooth structure and address oral health problems. These treatments focus on eliminating harmful bacteria; cleaning the teeth so they are free of plaque, tartar, and other debris; and restoring a strong foundation for the teeth and a durable layer of protection for sensitive tooth tissues. Some of the treatments that may be appropriate for tooth sensitivity when chewing include the following:

  • Dental fillings
  • Inlays or onlays
  • Dental crowns
  • Periodontal treatment

Our dentists will consider each case to provide our patients with a treatment plan that will best meet their unique needs.

Schedule an Appointment

Strong, healthy teeth should function without causing any pain. If you are suffering from tooth sensitivity when chewing, our experienced dentists can help you restore oral comfort. Schedule an appointment at your earliest convenience to learn more about our restorative dentistry services.

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3415 Livernois Rd
Troy, MI 48083

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