ADAA View Course

Dentinal Hypersensitivity: Dilemmas and Treatment (AGD 161)

Presenter: Howard E. Strassler, DMD, FADM, FAGD, FACD


For the dental community, the increasing life span of the average person will result in patients who require more dental health care for a longer period of time. As gingival recession is a condition that only worsens with age, its contribution to dentinal hypersensitivity cannot be ignored. Statistics show that approximately one-third of the nearly 77 million American adults, the baby boomers, over age 60 are at risk for recession in one or more teeth. With the impending flood of dentinal hypersensitivity cases that are likely to result from this demographic, the treatment of dental hypersensitivity is more important than ever. When a patient presents with dentinal hypersensitivity, dental professionals have an obligation to provide well-considered recommendations for treatment, whether in the office, at home, or both. We will see an increase in the need to provide our patients with recommendations for all levels of dental treatment based upon the changing demographics. This course will discuss factors contributing to and treatment methods for dentinal sensitivity.


Dr. Howard Strassler is professor and director of operative dentistry at the University of Maryland Dental School in the Departments of Endodontics, Prosthodontics, and Operative Dentistry. He has lectured nationally and internationally on techniques and a selection of dental materials in clinical use and aesthetic restorative dentistry. He is a fellow in the Academy of Dental Materials and the Academy of General Dentistry, a member of the American Dental Association, the Academy of Operative Dentistry, and the International Association of Dental Research. He is on the editorial board of numerous publications. He is a consultant and clinical evaluator to more than 15 dental manufacturers. Dr. Strassler has published more than 400 articles in the field of restorative dentistry and innovations in dental practice, and he has coauthored seven chapters in texts. He has presented more than 425 programs, including most of the major programs throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe. Dr. Strassler has a general practice in Baltimore, Maryland.


Upon completion of this course, the dental professional should be able to:

•Describe the changing demographics of patients and their growing needs for dental care — be it treatment of caries and periodontal diseases, failures of existing restorations, tooth sensitivity, or other conditions.
•Explain the causes and effects of dentinal hypersensitivity as it relates to the physiology of teeth and patient discomfort.
•List the protocol steps when assessing a treatment plan for a patient with dentinal hypersensitivity, and interpret how the treatment effectively resolves the patient’s pain.
•Recognize there are different forms of treatment for each patient — in the office or at home.


The ADAA has an obligation to disseminate knowledge in the field of dentistry.  Sponsorship of a continuing education program by the ADAA does not necessarily imply endorsement of a particular philosophy, product or technique.

The ADAA cautions participants taking this course on the hazards of using limited knowledge when integrating new techniques into their practices.

Credits earned upon completion of the course may be used to meet DANB’s Recertification Requirements.


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