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3 Causes of Cold Sensitivity and How to Prevent It

woman with cold sensitivity having ice cream

Cold sensitivity in your teeth is one of the most common issues we see in dentistry.  The symptoms can be temporary, or in some cases, mean something more serious that should be addressed.

When you come to Purity Dental for your exam, we’ll perform a thorough evaluation to see what the cause of your cold sensitivity is and how it should be addressed.

Common Causes of Sensitive Teeth and How to Deal with Them

  • Gum Recession

Our gum tissue covers the roots of our teeth, which aren’t meant to be exposed.  The roots don’t have protective enamel like the body of our tooth or “crown” (above the gums) does.  The layer underneath the enamel is made of dentin that’s extremely sensitive to cold temperature. So when you have gum recession and the cold touches the roots, it will be sensitive.

Aggressive brushing techniques or gum disease can cause gum recession.  When you brush your teeth, don’t bear down on the toothbrush – use one with soft or extra soft bristles.


  • Cavities

Cavities break down our teeth and expose surfaces that aren’t meant to be. Once the cavities erode through the outer layer of our tooth enamel, it reaches the dentin layer – which we previously mentioned is the sensitive portion of teeth.

In order to prevent cavities, we need to establish good oral hygiene habits.  Also, visiting our dentist twice a year for checkups and a cleaning will help prevent cavities and spot them as soon as they develop – so that they can be treated and prevent further symptoms from occurring.

  • A Cracked Tooth

When a tooth is fractured or cracked, the cold seeps down into the tooth, causing sensitivity.

If you grind or clench your teeth speak, with our dentist because this could lead to cracked teeth and broken dental work. We may recommend that you wear a mouthpiece at night to protect your smile.

If you’ve been experiencing cold sensitivity, don’t suffer from it anymore!