Several conditions with teeth can present with cold sensitivity, to properly diagnose the problem you will need x-rays and an exam. However, one of the common causes for cold sensitivity is from exposed nerves on the root surface. Periodontal disease, grinding, and aggressive brushing can all cause recession of the gums (the tissue drops and exposes root surface). Unlike enamel, root surfaces have nerves right on the surface of the tooth. These exposed nerves can be very sensitive to cold! There are a few kinds of toothpaste that have Potassium Nitrate including Sensodyne and Colgate Sensitive. The active ingredient in these pastes will “plug” the nerves on the root surface and are very effective at helping with cold sensitivity on the root surface.
Mary Peterson RDH