Gum Line Sensitivity and Notches

It is not uncommon for patients to be concerned about sensitivity near the gum line.  It is also not uncommon for patients to be concerned about notches in the teeth at the gum line.  These notches resemble what the trunk of a tree would look like if someone was in the process of cutting the tree down.  These notched areas can be a problem.

The reason why these notched areas can be a problem is because these areas can become sensitive, these areas can retain food and plaque, and these areas can get too close to the nerve of the teeth.  If no treatment is pursued the problems that can develop include decalcification, decay, tooth breakage, or damage to the nerve.  As a result, when these notches are significantly deep, we recommend filling these in with a tooth-colored material.    The advantage to filling these areas in include improving the esthetic appearance, decreasing sensitivity, removing the potential for decalcification and decay, and protecting the nerve of the teeth.

By far the most common cause of these notches is aggressive tooth brushing.  This can be more directly attributed to a tooth brush firmer than a soft brush, a coarse tooth paste, or from aggressive brushing either by using too much force or by brushing in a reciprocating horizontal stroking motion.  Proper brushing includes using a soft brush, using a tooth paste carrying the American Dental Association seal, using a gentle force during brushing, and by using an up and down or circular motion for brushing.

If you have an interest in the quality of care and the genuine concern we have for our patients and their teeth, we invite you to contact us at (972) 250-2580, or by messaging us through this site.

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