Sensitive Teeth? What to Look For When Purchasing Toothpaste for Sensitivity

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sensitive teeth what to look for when purchasing toothpaste for sensitivity

Having sensitive teeth is a problem that thousands of people struggle with every day. It can make planning meals and enjoying outings very difficult, knowing that most food items will cause pain or discomfort. The pain from sensitive teeth can also come insidiously without being prompted by something you ate. You could have pain throughout the day just from being in a cooler room or standing in front of a fan in serious cases.

There are a two ways to combat sensitive teeth:

  • Avoid any food that errs even slightly from room temperature
  • See a dentist to get to root of the problem!

We can help you treat your teeth sensitivity and find out what your symptoms are. In the meantime before your appointment, you’ll want to switch over to a toothpaste that’s better for your condition.

Here’s some information about what to look for in toothpaste for sensitivity. This way, you can still enjoy all your favourite drinks and foods like ice cream, coffee, and soda.

Why Are Your Teeth Sensitive?

Sensitivity in teeth stems from eroded enamel. When your enamel erodes, pores in your teeth become exposed and extremely hot or cold food items have access to your tooth nerves.

While you unfortunately can’t build back enamel after it’s been lost, sensitivity toothpaste can cover up the pores in your teeth or numbing your gum lines. This is a temporary, but financially economical way to get daily relief from symptoms of tooth sensitivity.

Who is At-Risk for Teeth Sensitivity?

There is no population that is more at risk for having sensitive teeth than others. Anyone can become subject to the symptoms of tooth sensitivity.

What Are the Signs Teeth Sensitivity?

This condition can be caused or exacerbated by several factors:

  • Brushing your teeth too hard (scrubbing and pressing down too hard) can eventually rub away your tooth enamel. Even using a brush with hard bristles instead of soft ones can cause your gums to receded, exposing the dentin beneath, which is where the nerve endings are.
  • Gingivitis can inflame the gums and expose the tooth root as well, leading to symptoms.
  • A cracked tooth will expose the pulp of the tooth, which can become filled with plaque and inflamed.
  • Grinding or clenching your teeth often can also erode the enamel on the crown.
  • Acidic foods and even some mouth washes that are acidic can grind down your enamel as well. 

You can also suffer sensitivity issues after a whitening session or a dental procedure. Teeth whitening opens the pores on the enamel which can lead to sensitivity, but this is usually temporary. Some procedures such as a tooth filling can cause sensitivity as well, but pain should also be temporary. You can use a toothpaste for a few days to lessen the symptoms.

What Kind of Toothpaste You Need

When choosing a toothpaste to combat sensitive teeth, you have to first consider what your main goal is:

  • Are your symptoms so bad that you’re willing to sacrifice anything for the maximum relief?
  • Or are they just sort of bad, and you’d rather have tooth whitening effects, fresher breath, multi-action, or the like?

Not all sensitivity toothpastes offer the same things. Some may offer maximum sensitivity relief, but you may not like the taste, or they may do nothing for gum protection, plaque, or cavity prevention. If your symptoms are relatively mild, you would probably benefit from a tooth paste that works on multiple dental issues.

If you have sensitivity that’s due to a cracked tooth, this is unfortunately not able to be remedied by a mere toothpaste. You need to see a dentist right away to avoid an infection.

How To Pick The Right Brand

There are dozens of toothpaste brands out there, and just as many that are indicated for sensitive teeth. While it may be tempting to just go for the cheapest brand, it may not have all the things you need for a sensitivity-reducing toothpaste. There are several categories to assess such as:

  • Brand
  • Cost
  • ADA approval
  • Active ingredients

Here are some criteria to look out for when choosing a new toothpaste brand.

Brand Name

Sometimes, sticking with a brand name gives you a sense of trust and ease, since these names have been trusted for generations. If you already have a brand of toothpaste that you know and love, making the switch to the sensitive version of that brand will be easy and seamless.


Buying sensitive toothpaste may seem too costly, and some brands may appear too expensive. However, most sensitive toothpastes are the same price as many major brand tooth pastes like Crest or Colgate. It’s easy to find a brand that costs as much as you’re already paying for toothpaste, and a tube of paste will usually last a couple of months.

Buying a toothpaste that is a little pricier is still much more cost effective than having a procedure done to reduce sensitivity, like a root canal.

Seal of Approval

Not all toothpaste brands have been certified for all the benefits they claim to have. However, some brands, such as Crest Pro-Health, have a seal of approval for fighting sensitivity, gingivitis, plaque, stains, etc. This extra stamp of approval will make you confident that you’re getting the best product for your teeth.

Active Ingredients

The main thing you need to look for when searching for a sensitivity tooth paste is that the paste is indicated for sensitive teeth. This will tell you that that specific toothpaste has been specially formulated to desensitise the nerves that cause the sensitivity and pain.

Bottom Line

Living with the symptoms of sensitive teeth can feel debilitating. The pain can sometimes be so uncomfortable that it may even disrupt your day-to-day life. Luckily, there is a very practical solution! Finding a good sensitive tooth paste can be your key to living a discomfort-free life. All the information you need about what brand is best for you is right on the product box!