Can I get teeth whitening if I have sensitive teeth?

Teeth whitening is an excellent option for individuals who want to brighten their smile, but is it safe for people with tooth sensitivity?

 The short answer is yes. As long as you visit your dentist before starting any whitening treatment, you can safely get rid of discolouration, even if you have sensitive teeth.

 Let’s take a look at the basics of teeth whitening, and how to get it done safely. 

 Why do teeth get sensitive after teeth whitening?

Tooth whitening contains bleaching gels. During in-office teeth whitening, bleach causes some patients teeth sensitivity for 1-2 days after treatment. This is because the whitening agent penetrates the enamel, exposing some nerve endings close to the surface. 

Luckily, whitening technology is getting smarter by the day. At JJS Dentistry, we use an advanced whitening treatment called Zoom! Teeth whitening. Zoom! Teeth whitening contains a pH booster, meaning it’s completely safe for your teeth. The gels contain amorphous calcium phosphate, sodium fluoride and potassium nitrate to help desensitize and remineralize the teeth during the bleaching process. 

 Which oral problems must be fixed before teeth whitening?

 If you have gum disease, your dentist will need to treat the gum disease, and teeth whitening can only be done when the gums are fully healed. Also, if you have other dental problems such as cavities, your dentist will recommend that you get fillings before starting a whitening treatment. 

If you have particularly sensitive teeth, we may suggest using a fluoride gel or rinse, or strong fluoride toothpaste to strengthen your teeth. There are also in-office treatments that can help with sensitivity, such as fluoride varnishes or plastic resins.

Fortunately, many dental problems are completely treatable. Once your dentist feels your teeth are in a better condition, chances are, you’ll get the green light to pursue your perfect smile. 

Get whitening from a dental professional

 Various clinical studies and research show that teeth whitening done under the supervision of a dentist is generally safe. Ideally, you should choose a dentist that has extensive experience with the procedure. Dental experts know best how the procedure works. 

 At JJS Dentistry, we can also guide you through the entire process from start to finish. In addition, we offer you plenty of information and make sure your teeth are suitable for treatment beforehand.

During the procedure, Dr JJ Serfontein applies an appliance that protects and covers the gums around the teeth. This makes the process even safer.

 Tips for reducing sensitivity after teeth whitening 

  • After your treatment, use a prescribed toothpaste and/or gel specifically designed for sensitive teeth. In most cases, the sensitivity will last up to 48 hours – you can go back to your regular toothpaste after this period.
  • Be gentle when brushing your teeth. Use a soft-bristled brush and lukewarm water instead of cold water to ease sensitive teeth. We also recommend that you leave the toothpaste in your mouth for a few minutes after you’ve finished brushing to give it some extra time to work.
  • For a few days after your treatment, try to avoid very hot and very cold drinks. We also recommend trying to avoid drinks like coffee and tea to prevent staining. 
  • You can drink from a straw, as this makes the liquid bypass your teeth, and helps prevent sensitivity.

So there you have it. Even if you have sensitive teeth, chances are you don’t have to settle for those unsightly stains. In fact, with the guidance of a Dentist in Cape Town, you can make your teeth instantly whiter and brighter. A gorgeous smile can be a confidence booster and a great way to get noticed, so get your brand new smile today!