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Teeth Whitening Trays for Sensitive Teeth from Your Dentist
When patients have sensitivity in their mouths, they may wonder if teeth whitening is even an option for them. Teeth sensitivity can be caused by cracked or decayed teeth, gum disease or receding gums.
A person having sensitive teeth makes the process of teeth whitening more challenging, however, it is not impossible. People with sensitive teeth should always consult a dentist before whitening their teeth. Failing to do so can lead to permanent damage being done to their teeth and increased sensitivity.
Improving the color of sensitive teeth with teeth whitening trays
Teeth sensitivity typically starts from the gum line, so dentists often recommend treating gum disease before considering teeth whitening. The same goes for problems caused by tooth decay like cavities since whitening products can make them worse.
Once the patient's underlying dental issues have been addressed, it is safe for them to proceed with teeth whitening treatments. Popular whitening options for people with sensitive teeth include:
1. Professional teeth whitening
In-office teeth whitening trays produce faster results. They improve the color of the patient's teeth by up to eight shades in as little as 90 minutes. These treatments are performed using the strongest whitening products available. They contain high concentrations of bleaching agents like hydrogen peroxide and hydrogen carbamide and are only sold to dentists.
The intensity of the patient's sensitivity will determine if in-office treatments are right for them. Generally speaking, the more concentrated a bleaching product is, the more likely it is to lead to teeth sensitivity. Or, in the case of those who already have sensitivity, it may be heightened after a teeth whitening session. Dentists can combat teeth sensitivity by adding potassium nitrate to the whitening tray or performing a fluoride treatment to strengthen the patient's enamel.
2. At-home teeth whitening
This might be the best option for patients with sensitive teeth. Take-home teeth whitening trays involve using milder bleaching agents than those used in office and the patient gets a customized mouth tray that helps to prevent the bleaching agent from getting into soft tissues in the mouth.
Results take longer with at-home teeth whitening trays, but the patient is less likely to experience significant sensitivity. The dentist can also prescribe desensitizing products to help manage any sensitivity. People who experience teeth sensitivity to the point it starts to interfere with their daily routine should discontinue using any whitening products.
Other options for people with sensitive teeth
Patients who experience severe teeth sensitivity when whitening their teeth have a few other options to explore. These include:
- Composite bonding: This involves applying a composite resin to the discolored tooth. The composite can be color-matched with the patient's teeth and it covers up stains and discoloration.
- Veneers: These are thin, tooth-shaped shells that are used to cover up the front surfaces of teeth. This helps eliminate sensitivity.
- Crowns: Crowns cover up the visible part of a tooth and they are a great way to cover up stains that affects multiple sides. Additionally, they can eliminate sensitivity by covering up the tooth.
Get started with teeth whitening!
Want to learn more about take-home teeth whitening trays for those with sensitive teeth? While it may seem impossible to undergo whitening with sensitive teeth, it is not. Working with a dentist is a great place to start. Reach out today!
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