Whitening your teeth is one surefire way to boost your self-confidence and improve the look of your smile. It is also a rather simple procedure that can be accomplished either at the dental office or at your own home.
The only downside to whitening your teeth is the sensitivity that sometimes develops. There are ways to combat this issue and still allow yourself to whiten your teeth and achieve that beautiful smile.
Although the exact cause of sensitivity from whitening is largely unknown, we do know that the properties of peroxide (one of the main ingredients in most tooth whitening products) has been shown to irritate the tooth nerve. This irritation or inflammation causes symptoms such as cold sensitivity and a tingling sensation. Either way the sensitivity will go away within a few hours or a few days, leaving you with a bright smile. There are a few things you can try to reduce the sensitivity:
- Brush your teeth before whitening not after whitening. Brushing right after whitening will further open pores on exposed dentin and create sensitivity. It can also damage your enamel since some bleaching agents are slightly acidic. Let your teeth recover afterwards.
- Use a Desensitizing Gel to calm your the nerves in your teeth prior to whitening. For the most relief, you should apply the gel to your teeth for 10 to 30 minutes before bleaching using the same bleaching trays you got from your dentist and rinse afterwards.
Ideally, the gel should contain both 5% potassium nitrate and fluoride. Your dentist is able to prescribe specifically designed desensitizing gels.
For more information on other dental related issues like dental bonding, veneers, and dental implants to a complete spectrum of dental services, Dr. Isidoros Mereos offers Miami residents quality dental services ranging from cosmetic dentistry, general dentistry, to implant dentistry and more.
You can make an appointment with our cosmetic dentist by calling our friendly staff at (305) 532-9114