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Dental Hygiene

Teeth sensitivity

04/23/2001

Question:

HI, Have recently undergone "root planing" and am experiencing a great deal of teeth sensitivity. Have used Sensodyne, Prescription Fluoride toothpaste with little effect. What else can I try? (Also fluoride rinses). Thanks for your time!

Answer:

The vast majority of root sensitivity following root planing will go away on its own with a little time AND meticulous plaque removal daily by the individual. It is bacteria in the plaque that will keep teeth sensitive longer. Communicate the sensitivity to your dentist. Usually baseline information is recorded such as which teeth are sensitive and a score or level of discomfort; then, a home care regimen is planned by you and your dentist or hygienist. Home care may include use of a prescription strength fluoride gel.

After a period of a specific home care plan, then the dentist has additional professional products that can be applied to the teeth that remain sensitive.

Another suggestion is to eliminate tartar control tooth pastes during this period of sensitivity. In some individuals, this causes tooth sensitivity.

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Response by:

Marilyn J Hicks, MS, BS
Assistant Professor, Dental Hygiene
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University