Teeth whitening has rapidly gained popularity over the years. Whitening can be done in-office at a dental clinic in Airdrie or at home with an over-the-counter product. Regardless of the method that you choose, sensitivity is a common side effect reported by many patients.

Before you book a teeth whitening session in Airdrie or purchase a product in-store or online, here are some important facts to know about teeth sensitivity and if whitening can permanently damage your teeth.

Can teeth whitening cause permanent sensitivity

Can teeth whitening cause permanent sensitivity

What is teeth sensitivity?

Patients describe typical dentinal hypersensitivity as a generalized discomfort of the teeth that are more prominently felt when consuming something cold or when brushing. 

Teeth sensitivity is also associated with cracks in teeth, dental trauma, or leakage under faulty restorations. Another less common type of sensitivity is called a ‘zinger’ – a sudden, shooting pain that lasts for just a few seconds. When it comes to teeth whitening, most patients report discomfort aligned with dentinal hypersensitivity. 

Why does teeth whitening cause sensitivity?

Most whitening products are made with hydrogen peroxide as the active ingredient which some people are sensitive to. Discomfort can be felt during the procedure, and sensitivity can be more pronounced when drinking or eating hold or cold products. 

How can I whiten my teeth safely?

Teeth whitening is generally safe, and the sensitivity is short-term if it’s done correctly. Too many whitening products can weaken the enamel and lead to cellular damage such as gingivitis and oversensitivity. 

To reduce your risk of oversensitivity or damage:

  • Avoid purchasing online products that aren’t tested for safety or effectiveness
  • Avoid DIY home teeth whitening recipes that are often acidic in pH, which weaken the enamel
  • Refrain from using professional strength products that should only be handled by a dental professional

Final thoughts

When it comes to your oral health, it’s always in your best interest to consult a professional dentist before trying any whitening products. Dental offices in Airdrie offering teeth whitening services will usually check first to see if you have any underlying conditions that can be impacted by whitening products, such as gum disease or cavities. 

Once you’re given the go-ahead for teeth whitening, your dentist will work with you to achieve beautiful results while lessening the risk of damage or oversensitivity. Working with a dentist in Airdrie has the added benefit of custom-fitted trays and professional-grade whitening gels that will deliver fast and safe results.