Brief description of condition
Dentine hypersensitivity is caused by exposed dentine resulting in pain in response to an external stimulus (touch, or hot or cold food and drinks). It is a common condition that rarely may present as an urgent problem.
Key signs and symptoms
- Pain (sharp, sudden and short-lived)
- Exposed root surface as a result of gingival (gum) recession
Advise the patient to avoid acidic foods or drinks and to obtain a proprietary desensitising toothpaste and apply a small amount to the affected area with a finger.
Advise the patient to seek non-urgent dental care to eliminate other causes of dental pain (e.g. dental decay).
Eliminate other causes of dental pain (e.g. reversible pulpitis).
In addition to application of desensitising toothpaste, consider other topical therapies (e.g. fluoride varnish, dentine bonding agents).
- Poulsen S, Errboe M, Lescay Mevil Y, Glenny A-M. Potassium containing toothpastes for dentine hypersensitivity. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2006, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD001476. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD001476.pub2.