Symptoms of Sensitivity





There are many reasons your teeth might hurt, but one of the most common is tooth sensitivity pain. If you’ve ever winced after an unwelcome twinge of sharp pain when you eat or drink something cold or hot, sweet or sour, this is one of the signs of tooth sensitivity.

To find out what’s causing your tooth pain you should visit your dentist for a check-up and where you can ask about tooth sensitivity. They will be able to identify the cause of your symptoms and rule out any of the other causes of tooth pain such as tooth decay, infection, disease or injury.

Here you can find out about the reasons why your teeth might hurt and learn about sensitive teeth symptoms.

Why Do My Teeth Hurt?


If you feel a short, sharp twinge of pain when you eat or drink something cold, hot, sweet or sour, or if it’s painful when you brush your teeth, then you could have sensitive teeth, but there are other reasons why your teeth might hurt. You can take our Online Check Up to learn about the symptoms of sensitive teeth. If you are experiencing tooth pain you can visit your dentist to find out what’s causing it and to discuss whether your symptoms could mean you have sensitive teeth.


Cavities are the result of tooth decay, and the pain they cause can feel like tooth sensitivity – but they are different. Tooth decay happens when the sugars in food and drink react with plaque (a sticky, colourless film of bacteria that builds up on your teeth)¹ to produce acids. These acids can gradually soften and dissolve your enamel and dentine (the soft substance inside your tooth) creating a hole in the tooth – known as a cavity.

The pain from a cavity tends to be a dull ache that may be triggered by eating or biting down on something and may resemble sensitivity pain.²

If your teeth hurt you should always consult your dentist, but regular check ups are the best way to take good care of your teeth all the time. This is particularly important as you may not feel any pain from tooth decay until it’s quite advanced.

The best way to prevent sensitivity and tooth decay is to brush twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste, like Sensodyne Rapid Relief, which is clinically proven to relieve sensitivity pain at just 60 seconds and contains fluoride to prevent cavities.*


Besides sensitivity and tooth dacay there are other reasons your teeth may hurt.

  • Dental treatment – You may feel sensitivity for a while after dental treatments.
  • Tooth whitening – You may experience temporary tooth sensitivity after whitening treatments.
  • Tooth infection – The soft pulp inside the tooth can become infected which can be very painful, causing intense throbbing and tooth sensitivity.³
  • Cracked teeth – A cracked or chipped tooth can causepain if the dentine inside your tooth becomes exposed.⁴

The best way to prevent tooth pain is to follow a good oral hygiene routine and visit your dentist regularly. You should brush twice daily with a fluoride toothpaste. The Sensodyne range contains daily toothpastes, with fluoride, to meet different preferences as well as toothbrushes and mouthwashes to complete your oral hygiene routine.

*Apply a pea sized amount to a clean fingertip and rub gently into each sensitive tooth (max twice per day) for 1 minute
1 Cavity or Sensitive Teeth: What’s The Difference? | Sensodyne. 2018. Cavity or Sensitive Teeth: What’s The Difference? | Sensodyne. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 09 March 2018].
2 WebMD. 2018. Tooth Pain: Common Causes and Treatment. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 09 March 2018].
3 NHS.UK. 2018. Dental Abscess - NHS.UK. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 09 March 2018].
4 WebMD. 2018. Tooth Pain: Common Causes and Treatment. [ONLINE] Available at: [Accessed 09 March 2018].