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Does Teeth Whitening Cause Sensitivity?

woman holds up shades of teeth coloring as she asks her dentist does professional teeth whitening cause sensitivity

Many adults seek professional teeth whitening services to clear away the tell-tale signs of aging, such as yellowing or staining of the teeth. Whether from coffee, tea, tobacco, or other staining producers, teeth often become yellowed or grayed over the years. Luckily, there are ways to reverse the stains, but many wonder, “Does professional teeth whitening cause sensitivity to teeth?” They’ve read or heard enough to know there is some cause for concern.

If you know someone with sensitive teeth after whitening, you may also know that the sensitivity usually passes. However, there are specific causes for the sensitivity and numerous ways to mitigate any discomfort. If you want to learn more, reach out to Dental Designs of Maryland – Hanover, MD. We can clear up any confusion or uncertainty about teeth whitening and its potential side effects. Call us today at 443.733.6879, and one of our friendly team members will gladly assist you.

Can Teeth Whitening Cause Sensitivity?

The answer is yes. Sensitive teeth after whitening are relatively common. Dentists understand that this phenomenon occurs when the products used to whiten teeth sensitize the dentinal microtubules in the teeth. Those products weaken teeth slightly, exposing the microtubules, which convey messages from the outer part of the teeth to the nerves inside, to increase sensation. It is important that your teeth have some sensitivity while you chew, for example, to pressure, heat, and cold. But when that sensitivity is temporarily amplified after a whitening procedure, it can be unnerving and uncomfortable.

Fortunately, the sensitivity typically does not last long. The fluoride in the toothpaste recommended after whitening helps restore the minerals in your teeth, re-strengthening them to undo the sensitizing effects of the whitening process. This process may span a few days for most individuals, but for those with sensitive teeth, it could extend up to several weeks.

Tips for How to Desensitize Your Teeth after Whitening

After a teeth whitening procedure, there are some things you can do to ease sensitivity, such as:

  • Stay away from food and drink that is very cold or hot for several days after your procedure.
  • Regularly use fluoride toothpaste as well as a fluoride rinse to rebuild and strengthen your teeth.
  • Try a special toothpaste that is designed for tooth sensitivity.
  • Do not use your electric toothbrush when your teeth are sensitive, as the vibrations can increase discomfort.
  • Use soft or extra-soft bristled toothbrushes for a gentler experience for sore teeth.

For people who already have sensitive teeth, professional teeth whitening can still be received, but the treatment will likely be tweaked to mitigate their sensitivity reaction. For instance, a dentist can slow down the process, do the whitening more slowly over time, and use lower concentrations of the peroxide product.

Does professional teeth whitening cause sensitivity? Even though the answer is yes, there are many ways to avoid, minimize, or shorten the duration of that sensitivity. Don’t make a decision about whitening until you have a chat with one of our staff at Dental Designs of Maryland – Hanover, MD.

Call Dental Designs of Maryland – Hanover, MD, to Schedule an Appointment for Our Teeth Whitening Services

Our premier dental practice is based on our commitment to providing a superb dental experience. We treat our patients with respect, compassion, and integrity. We will always inform you of possible side effects, such as sensitivity in teeth after whitening, and provide you with solutions, support, and evidence-based projections.

If you want whiter teeth, we can help you achieve that goal safely and with minimal discomfort. It’s easy to connect with us to ask questions or make an appointment to discover how teeth whitening could work for you. Call us at 443.733.6879 to schedule an appointment, or contact us online with any questions or concerns.