If you’re planning to get a new teeth transformation with teeth whitening, it’s natural to worry about its effects on your oral health. Since whitening treatments contain whitening agents like hydrogen peroxide, your teeth are exposed to chemicals that can affect the tooth enamel.
Either you’re using an over-the-counter whitening product or professional whitening treatment, it’s essential to know what to expect during and after teeth whitening treatment.
What are the possible side effects of teeth whitening?
A; The common side effect of teeth whitening is tooth sensitivity and mild gum irritation. In a professional teeth whitening treatment, a more concentrated hydrogen peroxide is used to help patients achieve 6 to 8 shades lighter teeth.
As the hydrogen peroxide penetrates the tooth enamel to bleach the stains, it also removes a few minerals from the tooth enamel. Thus, exposing the dentin results in temporary tooth sensitivity that only lasts for a maximum of three days. The sensitivity will subside once the minerals in your teeth are replenished from the foods and drinks you consume.
Mild gum irritation can also occur when the whitening solution is applied to your gums or due to ill-fitting whitening trays. In a dental practice, rubber or gel is placed over your gums to protect them from the whitening agent. The irritation also subsides after a few days post-treatment.
How to deal with tooth sensitivity after whitening
The tooth sensitivity peaks two to three days after your treatment. To manage the sensitivity pain at home, here are some tips to soothe your recovering teeth:
- Use a soft-bristled toothbrush: Your tooth enamel is still recovering from the whitening treatment and can be easily damaged by abrasives. Use a toothbrush with soft and fine bristles to prevent damaging the tooth enamel and worsen tooth sensitivity.
- Prefer fluoride rinses and desensitizing toothpaste: Your dentist may recommend desensitizing toothpaste for your teeth for a couple of days until the sensitivity subsides. Also, fluoride rinses can speed up the restoration of your tooth enamel and replenish all the minerals lost during the treatment.
- Avoid hot or cold food and beverages until the sensitivity subsides: Avoid foods that can trigger tooth sensitivity, and eat a soft diet for two to three days.
- Be gentle in brushing your teeth: After a teeth whitening treatment, your teeth are in their most delicate form and can be damaged easily if you brush aggressively. Take your time to brush properly with more gentle strokes.
- Avoid using your teeth as a tool: Your teeth should never be used as a tool to hold things or open bottles, especially after whitening treatments. Doing so increases your chances of cracking or wearing down your teeth.
The side effects of professional teeth whitening are only temporary and do not damage your teeth for the long term. The risky part is when you use teeth whitening products that contain high levels of hydrogen peroxide without the supervision of your dentist.
Let our dental team transform your smile. Soft Touch Dental provides teeth whitening treatment in Florissant. Schedule an appointment now and get your dream smile with the dental experts that you can trust.