How Teeth Sense Cold

Trusted Health Products

Written By Kassandra Foreman / Reviewed By Ray Spotts

Sensitive teeth react painfully to cold temperatures, such as when consuming a cold beverage. Researchers at the Friedrick-Alexander University Erlangen-Numberg have found that the molecular and cellular effects of cold that create the sensations within the teeth – known as odontoblasts - house proteins that sense temperature changes and cause the signals to arrive in the brain that alert it to the sense of pain.

Working with a team of scientists from around the world they have found a way to determine the way that the teeth sense the temperature and send a pain signal to the brain. They believe that by finding this target they can develop medications and drugs that will target it and block the protein from sensing the cold.

Beginning as a study on ion channels throughout the body and the pores that are present in cell membranes, it has been determined that they are the method by which signals are passed through the body. The chemical messages occur when the temperature changes and the channel either closes to block ions from passing back and forth or opens to allow ions to freely pass through the channel.

It was discovered over a decade ago that one of these channels was quite sensitive to cold sensations, though it was yet unknown where that was used in the body. It was determined that this channel is present within teeth and especially found in teeth that have cavities.

Tooth cavities with dentin exposed

As it is difficult to access the inner tooth through the layers of dentin and enamel without damaging the tooth or it falling apart, they began to study the entire system. This included examining the teeth, nerves within the teeth, and the jawbone.

In experiments where mice were provided ice cold water there was a notable reaction in the nerves to the cold, but this was lowered in those who were treated to block the channel. This particular channel was tracked to the odontoblast cell found between the pulp of the tooth and the dentin layer that surrounds it. This is particularly noticeable in a tooth that has a cavity leaving the dentin exposed.

This research took over a decade to reach these determinations, but it may help to control the pain that is felt by sensitive teeth as they are exposed to cold. The chemical that is needed can be produced into a method of treating sensitive teeth and may enable those who have the condition to enjoy a full range of foods at different temperatures.

This study also determined how clove oil is effective for treating pain. It affects the protein in the tooth that senses the cold and blocking it.

Looking for a 100% all-natural liquid tooth oil and mouth rinse? Check out OraMD Original Strength and OraMD Extra Strength. Subscribe to our Trusted Health Club newsletter for more information about natural living tipsnatural healthoral health and skincare. If you are looking for more health resources make sure to check out the Trusted Health Resources list

Written By:

Kassandra Foreman has been writing freelance for five years now and enjoys learning about new things to write about. When not writing she teaches yoga and meditation with a focus on health and fitness.

Reviewed By:

Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at

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