If you've ever experienced pain or discomfort while whitening your teeth, it may be the result of teeth whitening sensitivity. While achieving a beautiful smile can really help boost your self-confidence and make you feel great, you may question whether it's worth the pain. But if you do experience discomfort, know that while it can be uncomfortable, it doesn't cause any permanent damage to your teeth and typically doesn't last for very long. If you notice continued tooth whitening sensitivity, consult your dental professional.
Before you swear off pearly whites because of your fear of teeth whitening sensitivity, you should know that there are whitening products formulated specifically for you.
Having a beautiful smile doesn't have to be painful, which is why it's important to know and understand the causes of teeth whitening sensitivity.
Most professional and over-the-counter whitening products feature hydrogen peroxide as their active ingredient. Some people may have teeth that are sensitive to peroxide. Your teeth may start to ache during the whitening procedure, and you may feel discomfort when drinking or eating hot or cold products. This potential side effect of teeth whitening is usually short-term, and goes away with time.
Most home tooth whitening kits feature hydrogen peroxide, which is known to cause teeth whitening sensitivity for some people. When whitening your teeth, it's important to be aware of the two key factors that impact the level of sensitivity you experience:
Stay Away from Extreme Temperatures Using even the mildest products can cause teeth whitening sensitivity for some people. One of the best ways to minimize discomfort is to stick with room temperature beverages just after whitening. Extremely hot or extremely cold beverages can cause painful sensitivity.
Find Products with Lower Peroxide Levels and Shorter Application Times As a general rule, if you have teeth sensitive to whitening, stick to products with lower peroxide levels (around five to six percent) and shorter application times (five minutes an application). Using the same ingredient dentists use in a less concentrated formula, Crest 3D White Whitestrips Gentle Routine offers subtle whitening in a mild formula to provide a brighter smile and requires only five minutes a day. To help maintain the whitening results you’ve achieved with the whitestrips, try brushing with Crest Gum and Sensitivity Gentle Whitening Toothpaste. The foamy formula is designed to help treat sensitivity at the source while helping you maintain your white smile.
If you tend to have teeth sensitive to whitening, talk with your dentist about the options available to you. If you try a product and experience painful sensitivity, stop using it immediately and consult with a dental professional. Your dentist should be able to make the most appropriate product recommendations to meet your needs.
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