Many people with sensitive teeth are nervous about whitening them because they fear that the whitening process will cause their teeth to become even more sensitive. The good news is that there are effective methods of whitening sensitive teeth, which are less likely to cause sensitivity than other methods. Here’s some information on the different ways to whiten sensitive teeth, including at-home and in-office options.
What Is Tooth Sensitivity?
Tooth sensitivity is a common dental problem that occurs when the inner layer of your tooth, called the dentin, becomes exposed. This can happen due to gum recession, worn-down tooth enamel, or cracks in your teeth. When the dentin is exposed, it can make your teeth feel sensitive to hot, cold, or sweet foods and drinks. In some cases, tooth sensitivity can also cause pain or discomfort.
At-Home Teeth Whitening
If you're looking for an at-home teeth whitening solution, the best option is an at-home professional whitening kit. A dentist can create a custom-made tray that is specific to your teeth for optimal at-home results. Using a custom-fit tray for at-home whitening as opposed to other methods can help ensure the whitening solution doesn’t leak out from improper fit and cause gum irritation.
In-office teeth whitening is the most effective way to achieve brighter teeth quickly. The dentist will apply a bleaching gel to your teeth and then use a special light to activate the gel, which will remove stains without damaging your enamel. This process usually takes about an hour. You’ll see somewhat dramatic results after your first in-office whitening treatment, but you will need to periodically whiten them again in order to maintain the results.
Are Veneers An Option?
One option for whiter teeth is veneers. Veneers are thin, tooth-colored shells that are bonded to the front of your teeth. They can be used to cover up stains and discoloration, and they can also be used to change the shape, size, and length of your teeth. Veneers are a good option for people who have sensitive teeth because they do not require the use of harsh chemicals or bleaching agents.
How To Prevent Tooth Sensitivity
Tooth sensitivity is a common problem that can be caused by a number of different things including brushing too hard, use of whitening toothpastes, teeth grinding, over-whitening, and gum disease. Here are a few tips to help prevent it:
- Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and brush gently.
- Avoid whitening products that are acidic or abrasive.
- See your dentist regularly for cleanings and checkups.
- Use fluoride toothpaste and mouthwash.
Interested In Professional Whitening?
If you’re considering teeth whitening but are concerned about sensitivity, Dr. Luz Hernandez can help determine what teeth whitening treatment may be best for you. Contact us today at 813-994-8999 to learn more about teeth whitening or to set up an appointment.