Many people are prone to tooth sensitivity. In the past, some dentists did not recommend teeth whitening for these patients. New and improved professional whitening agents and techniques to reduce sensitivity allow most people to brighten their smiles. Dr. Jason Keefe offers Zoom!® In-Office Teeth Whitening and take-home whitening kits at 5 Mile Smiles in Spokane. Our dentist can determine if professional whitening treatments are the best way to improve tooth stains without worsening sensitive teeth.
Avoid Over-the-Counter Whitening Products If You Have Sensitive Teeth
Over the counter (OTC) whitening products, such as strips, gels, and toothpaste, often fail to produce noticeable results. The whitening agents used in OTC options are lower quality less precise than professional-grade bleaching products. OTC gels and strips may be too strong, causing increased sensitivity and gum irritation. They may lead to splotchy results because they’re not fitted to your teeth and bite, or the whitening agent may be too diluted and provide virtually no changes to tooth appearance.
When it comes to sensitive teeth, professional whitening treatments are the best way to brighten your smile without worsening sensitivity to hot and cold temperatures.
Teeth Whitening for Sensitive Teeth Starts with A Dental Exam
Discuss your tooth sensitivity during your next dental exam to see if teeth whitening is an option for you. Dr. Keefe will evaluate your teeth and gum tissue to see if you’re a good candidate. He may identify the root cause of your concern. Most cases of tooth sensitivity are at the gum line and not an issue with the tooth itself. The discomfort when you eat or drink cold or hot foods and beverages could be caused by gum disease, tooth decay, or infection. Damaged teeth with cracks, chips, breaks, or worn tooth enamel can also cause tooth sensitivity. Treating these dental issues can reduce discomfort before teeth whitening treatment.
Tips for Whitening Treatment with Sensitive Teeth
Zoom!® In-Office Teeth Whitening is the fastest way to remove tooth stains and improve discoloration. The professional-grade whitening agent is effective and gentler on teeth than previous methods. While teeth whitening can sometimes increase tooth sensitivity, Dr. Keefe may offer tips or alter the treatment details to reduce discomfort while still improving your smile, such as:
- Reducing the treatment time for teeth whitening
- Avoiding the overuse of bleaching products
- Using Sensodyne toothpaste or fluoride toothpaste and rinse for two weeks before your teeth whitening treatment
- Limiting hot and cold foods and beverages after teeth whitening
- Using a bleaching gel with less peroxide
- Brushing with an extra-soft bristled toothbrush to reduce irritation on the teeth and gums
- Lining custom-fitted, take-home whitening trays with Sensodyne toothpaste after a bleaching treatment for 10 minutes
- Wearing take-home whitening trays every other day or for less time than usual to reduce sensitivity
Our dentist and skilled dental team at 5 Mile Smiles can help you achieve a brighter and whiter smile even if you have sensitive teeth. Schedule a dental exam and consultation at our Spokane, Washington, dental office online or call (509) 326-2621.