Is Tooth Sensitivity After Cleaning Normal?

March 15, 2024
839 Views

Some people might notice their teeth feeling strange after a dental cleaning. This tooth sensitivity after cleaning can feel like a little zing or tingle when you sip something cold or hot or even when you brush.

This sensitivity can happen because the cleaning exposes the tooth’s surface, and your teeth react to that. It’s usually nothing to worry about and should calm down in a few days.

If it sticks around or worsens, giving your dentist a heads-up is always a good idea.

How Long Are Teeth Sensitive After Cleaning?

Teeth sensitivity after cleaning can vary from person to person, but it usually lasts for a few days to a week. During this time, you might feel discomfort when eating or drinking hot or cold foods and beverages or brushing your teeth.

However, the sensitivity usually diminishes as your gums and teeth adjust, and any inflammation subsides. If the sensitivity persists beyond a week or becomes severe, it is wise to consult your dentist for further evaluation.

What If Teeth Sensitivity Persists or Worsens after Deep Cleaning?

If teeth sensitivity persists or worsens after a deep cleaning, it’s recommended to follow up with your periodontist. They can evaluate your symptoms and determine the underlying cause of the sensitivity. In certain cases, persistent or worsening sensitivity indicates:

  • Exposed Dentin
    Deep cleaning can sometimes expose the dentin, the sensitive layer beneath the enamel. This elevates the issue of sensitivity. Your dentist can suggest additional treatments to address this issue, such as fluoride application or dental sealants.
  • Gum Recession
    If your gums have receded significantly, exposing the roots of your teeth, you can feel heightened sensitivity. Your dentist or periodontist can assess the extent of gum recession and recommend appropriate treatment options, such as gum grafting.
  • Tooth Decay or Infection
    Persistent sensitivity could be a sign of underlying tooth decay or an infection. Your dentist can conduct further examinations, such as X-rays, to identify any decay or infection. This helps them provide appropriate treatment, such as fillings or root canal therapy.
  • Cracked or Fractured Teeth
    Cracks or fractures in the teeth can also cause sensitivity, especially when biting or chewing. Your dentist can perform a thorough examination to detect any cracks or fractures and recommend suitable treatment options, such as dental bonding or crowns.

How to Relieve Teeth Sensitivity After Cleaning?

To ease teeth sensitivity after a cleaning, you can try a few simple steps:

  • Use a Desensitizing Toothpaste: Switch to a toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth. These toothpastes usually contain ingredients that help block pain signals from reaching the nerves in your teeth.
  • Avoid Extreme Temperatures: Avoid very hot or cold foods and drinks, as they can trigger sensitivity. Opt for lukewarm or room-temperature items instead.
  • Use a Soft-Bristled Toothbrush: Choose a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush gently to avoid further irritation to your teeth and gums.
  • Avoid Acidic Foods and Drinks: Acidic foods and beverages, like citrus fruits and sodas, can wear down tooth enamel and increase sensitivity. Try to limit your consumption of these edibles.
  • Consider Fluoride Treatments: Your dentist can recommend fluoride treatments or a mouth rinse to strengthen tooth enamel and reduce sensitivity.
  • Apply Desensitizing Gel: Your dentist can apply a desensitizing gel or varnish to your teeth during your cleaning appointment to provide immediate relief.
  • Follow Proper Oral Hygiene: Maintain good oral hygiene habits, including brushing twice daily, flossing daily, and using a fluoridated mouthwash to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Final Thoughts

It is common to experience tooth sensitivity after cleaning, but it won’t bother you long. You can even notice some bleeding as the cleaning tool touches the gums. However, the results are worth the effort.

Visit Dr. E. Todd Scheyer at Perio Health Professionals for any dental issues. Our doctor Enhances smiles and replaces missing teeth for optimal oral health. Dial (713) 783-5442 to book an appointment.

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