Teeth whitening has become wildly popular and can be done professionally or from the convenience of your own home. It can improve your smile and self-confidence along with it. The results can be highly effective and long lasting. There are several different products and procedures offered for teeth whitening. However, it is not uncommon to experience sensitivity in your teeth after this procedure. In fact, most people will experience dentin hypersensitivity after bleaching or whitening their teeth. This can be a deterrent for some people when contemplating getting their teeth whitened. If you are willing to deal with the mild discomfort that can come along with teeth whitening, there are many ways to alleviate your pain.
Options for Relief of Pain
Peroxide used in some teeth whitening products can soak through the enamel and temporarily leave nerves unprotected. This causes sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures, sugary food/drink, and pressure. Typically, symptoms will subside within 48 hours. However, if you experience extreme discomfort, you should try milder alternatives such as over-the-counter whitening kits. Check for the peroxide level on the label (6-10% is considered mild). You could also take Advil or Aleve, as recommended, to alleviate mild pain. Sensitive teeth toothpaste, used with a soft-bristled toothbrush, is recommended as well. Overuse of whitening products is a common mistake. Always follow the instructions closely and do not use more often than prescribed. The frequency of usage and duration should be cut back if painful symptoms persist.
Visit Your Dentist
Before deciding to have your teeth whitened, your best bet is to seek your dentist’s opinion. They may have an endorsed procedure that they can offer to you. Your dentist will likely determine your tooth sensitivity with and plan accordingly. Over-the-counter kits are generally safe to use, but if you are interested in more powerful bleaching that removes more than just surface stains, you will want to see what your dentist recommends.
For some, a little discomfort is not so severe of a trade-off for a sparkling white smile. For others, however, pain can be more significant and may be a sign that there is an issue. Bleaching may be out of the question for those who have highly sensitive teeth. For those with milder reactions, use the tips described above to overcome any discomfort brought on by whitening.