Greetings from Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney

Drs. John Pinnix and George Betancourt would like to extend our sincerest best wishes to you and your families. We hope that you continue to navigate these most difficult times with strength, perseverance and the promise that we will all soon return to 'business as usual'.

Please note, the purpose of this email is not to go into detail about our office protocols during the current COVID- 19 response. We always have and will continue to maintain the highest level of aseptic and sterilization techniques. Regarding our office hours, we are presently closed as a result of recommendations provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as the American Dental Association. For patients with upcoming appointments, trust that we will communicate directly with you via phone call to reschedule them as we learn more about our current situation.

For the time being, we want to extend to you, our patients, the helping hand you need during these times for all things dental. While we may be limited in terms of office hours and available services, Drs. Pinnix and Betancourt remain available to you via other modalities. For example, we ask that you please find and follow our social media pages, pinnixandbetancourt on Instagram, Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney on Facebook, and @BlakeneySmiles on Twitter. We will use these social media outlets as a means of communication and also a way to provide a Question & Answer forum for general questions anyone may have.

For personal/private needs related to ongoing treatment or your dental health, we will be available to schedule a virtual consultation. This may be accomplished via FaceTime, Zoom meeting or other platform whereby we may have a face to face encounter. These will be available to you, our patient, as a courtesy.

These are unprecedented times for us all. We strive to be on the front edge of the capabilities and service we provide our patients. Much of that depends on our availability and communication. We are here and we will, across any medium possible, provide the guidance you need during these difficult times. We ask that you please reach out to us either via email to the office (, one of our social media platforms, or our phone line from which you can leave a message. We will make every effort possible to get back to you in a timely manner.

From Drs. Pinnix, Betancourt and our entire staff at Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney, we hope you and your families manage the COVID-19 pandemic with an abundance of care, caution and respect for the well being of our community.


Drs. John M. Pinnix, George A. Betancourt and the staff of Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney

How Exposed Tooth Roots Can Lead to Tooth Sensitivity

By Dr. Pinnix on July 04, 2017

Gum recession and tooth root exposureThe team at our Charlotte restorative dentistry center believes in promoting total wellness. That means treating issues that affect the teeth as well as the gums and other structures of the mouth. It also means helping patients understand the causes of dental health problems so they can make changes to their lifestyle that lead to better overall wellness.

It's with all of this in mind that we'd like to consider the issue of tooth sensitivity. Specifically, we want to see why exposed tooth roots leads to such pronounced tooth sensitivity and what can be done about it.

The Anatomy of a Tooth

There are three layers to every tooth:

  • Tooth Enamel – The tooth enamel is the topmost layer of the tooth. The tooth enamel is one of the strongest substances in the entire body.

  • Dentin – Beneath the tooth enamel is a substance known as dentin. Dentin is not as strong as enamel, and it is also porous.

  • Pulp Chamber – Inside of every tooth is a chamber filled with soft tissue known as dental pulp. This pulp (comprised of blood vessels, nerve endings, and connective tissue) was essential for the initial formation and development of a tooth.

In addition to these layers, we should also consider the tooth itself with regard to the gumline and the jawbone. Above the gumline is the crown of the tooth, which is the exposed, strongest part of the tooth. Beneath the gumline is the tooth root, which is anchored into the jaw.

Gum Recession

Gum recession refers to the loss of tissue along the gumline. When this happens, the tooth roots become exposed. This can have a number of negative effects in terms of smile aesthetics, though the primary danger involves overall dental health. Keep in mind that once the gum tissue has receded, it will not grow back over the exposed tooth roots.

Why Gum Recession Leads to Tooth Sensitivity

The roots of the teeth have less enamel in their structure since they are intended to be concealed by the gums. This means anything that comes into contact with the tooth roots is closer to the porous dentin of the tooth as well as the pulp within a tooth.

Tooth sensitivity occurs because of the exposure of the roots and proximity to sensitive structures of the teeth. You may notice tooth sensitivity the most when having hot or cold food items or beverages.

In addition, we should also note that tooth decay can occur below the gumline following gum recession, which can be quite difficult to treat.

Causes of Gum Recession

Some of the common causes of gum recession include:

  • Smoking
  • Chewing tobacco
  • Gum disease
  • Aggressive brushing
  • Aggressive flossing
  • Oral piercing
  • Teeth grinding (bruxism)
  • Malocclusion

Treatments for Gum Recession

The ideal treatment for gum recession is an oral surgery known as gum grafting. This procedure involves the use of soft tissue from a donor site (typically the palate) or artificial gum grafts. These grafts are sutured along the gumline to replace the missing gum tissue.

In addition to gum grafting, it's important that the underlying cause of the gum recession be addressed as well. This could mean treatment for gum disease, orthodontic care for crooked teeth, or improving a patient's oral hygiene practices. All of these matters can be discussed in greater detail as part of the consultation process.

Contact Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney

For more information about treating exposed tooth roots and helping your smile look its best and be its healthiest, be sure to contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. The team at Advanced Dentistry of Blakeney is here to help you achieve optimal dental health.

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8918 Blakeney Professional Dr
Ste 100
Charlotte, NC 28277

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