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Sensitivity

Teeth can be sensitive for many reasons.

Pressure

Sensitivity to chewing pressure can be caused by:


Sweets

Sensitivity to sweet foods is usually caused by decay.


Hot and/or Cold

Sensitivity to hot and/or cold foods usually indicates:

It is not unusual for recent dental restorations to be sensitive to hot, cold, or pressure. This sensitivity should decrease with time. If sensitivity from a recent dental restoration worsens or persists, contact your dentist.


Whitening

Whitening can also temporarily cause mild sensitivity during treatment that disappears within a few days.

Toothache

Sensitivity due to a dental problem will worsen with time and become a toothache. A toothache is not like a headache. It won't just go away, even if the pain temporarily subsides. The problem that is causing the pain will just get worse, as will the pain, and simple treatment may no longer be possible. (See our pages on cavities, root canals, abscesses, and extractions to see how a cavity progresses from a minor to a major problem). At the first sign of a toothache, contact your dentist.