Tooth Sensitivity Vs. Cavity: How to Tell The Difference

May 30, 2023

Tooth sensitivity can have a major impact on your daily life. But is this sensitivity just annoying- or is it a symptom of a bigger problem? While some tooth pain is perfectly normal, other types of pain can indicate a dental problem, such as a cavity. In this article, we’ll go over tooth sensitivity vs. cavity symptoms so you can decode your pain and get the right relief.

What Causes Tooth Sensitivity?

First, let’s discuss tooth sensitivity. This is a common issue that can be caused by a variety of factors. Typically, sensitivity is caused by weakened tooth enamel. While some people naturally have thinner tooth enamel, others lose enamel over time due to tooth grinding, dietary choices, or even health issues like heartburn.

Tooth Sensitivity Vs. Cavity

While tooth sensitivity and cavities might seem similar, they are actually very different experiences. Tooth decay is an overall weakening of the tooth enamel, which can be caused by many different issues. Cavities, on the other hand, are small holes in the surface of the tooth that are caused by decay. Cavities are the more serious of the two issues, and must be treated quickly to prevent long-term oral damage.

Pain Levels for Tooth Sensitivity Vs. Cavity

Tooth sensitivity and cavities are very different oral concerns. Your pain level is usually the best indication of which problem you’re dealing with. People with sensitive teeth usually experience an all-over mouth pain, whereas cavity pain is centralized near the infected tooth. Sensitivity is also usually triggered by tooth grinding, hot/cold food, or another problem, while cavity pain can happen anytime. It’s also important to note that not all cavities cause pain. Therefore, it’s important to see your dentist for evaluation if you notice your teeth hurting. They can diagnose and treat the problem quickly.

Care For Your Entire Smile

The Houston Dental Implant and Cosmetic Center offers solutions for all of your dental needs. From routine examinations to complex oral surgeries, our team will address your symptoms, offer solutions, and provide you with the tools for long-term health. Click the link above today to book a visit with our team.

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