How to Manage Sensitivity After Teeth Whitening

Want a brighter, whiter smile? If so, you’re not alone. Experts estimate that nearly 40.5 million Americans whiten their teeth each year. Whitening treatments can lift stains caused by red wine, dark soda, and berries.

There are many options when it comes to brightening your smile, and that’s why the providers at Carl F. Lipe, DDS encourage you to come in to see us when you’re ready to explore your options.

Tooth sensitivity is the most common side effect of whitening, and it can affect you no matter which method of whitening you choose. You don’t need to give up on your dreams of a dazzling smile, though. 

Here are several ways to manage sensitivity after teeth whitening.

Always follow your dentist’s instructions

Tooth sensitivity usually lasts less than 48 hours after a treatment, and one of the best ways to reduce this sensitivity is to follow all of our instructions. If you’re using take-home professional treatments, be sure to keep the trays in only for the specified time — and don’t add on more days to your treatment unless Dr. Lipe or Dr. Juliann Lyons tells you to do so.

Go easy on the cold beverages

After a whitening treatment, your teeth may be extra sensitive to cold. You can reduce discomfort by avoiding icy, cold drinks. Try drinking room temperature water at least until the sensitivity subsides.

Don’t overdo the whitening products

Using a whitening toothpaste and whitening mouthwash immediately after receiving a whitening treatment can increase your sensitivity. It may be tempting to do an over-the-counter (OTC) whitening regimen to further enhance the results of your in-office treatment, but that might be too much whitening agent all at once. 

Use a sensitivity toothpaste

Skip the whitening toothpaste and grab a toothpaste formulated for sensitivity. These toothpastes can reduce discomfort and minimize sensitivity.

Use a soft-bristled brush

Hard brushes may seem like they scrub off plaque better, but the reality is that they irritate your gums. A soft-bristled brush is gentle on your tender gums. 

Skip the OTC whitening treatments

It’s hard to protect your gums when you use an OTC whitening treatment. Ill-fitting trays can cause the whitening agent to leak onto your gums. Professional treatments use stronger whitening agents, but we take care to protect your gums during each treatment. Plus, if you go with the take-home option, our custom-made trays fit your mouth perfectly.

Speak up 

If your sensitivity persists, tooth whitening treatments may not be the cause of your sensitivity. Cavities and gum disease can also cause tooth sensitivity. Don’t hesitate to speak up if your discomfort lasts longer than 48 hours.

Want to learn more about professional whitening treatments?

At Carl F. Lipe, DDS, we want to help you love your smile. That’s why we’re proud to offer a variety of cosmetic services, including professional teeth whitening. To schedule an appointment at our Denver, Colorado, clinic, call us at 303-558-6231 or simply book online.

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