Everyone knows teeth whitening to be a quick and painless dental treatment that helps get rid of the stains off your teeth and gives you a bright new smile. However, you should be completely informed about a procedure’s pros and cons before deciding to go through it. Teeth whitening, like any other dental process, comes with certain potential risks.
Teeth whitening involves bleaching your teeth to remove the stains and discoloration. The bleaching agent used is usually considered safe, but certain concerns may cause cavities or other dental health problems. You can speak to a dentist in Salina, Kansas, to understand the procedure and risks involved.
Potential risks of teeth whitening
- Increased sensitivity.
Teeth whitening may increase tooth sensitivity to hot and cold items. The bleaching agent used during the whitening process contains hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide, both of which are potent ingredients. They penetrate the enamel of your teeth and reach your nerves underneath. However, this sensitivity is usually temporary and goes away in a few days.
- Gum irritation.
Gum irritation occurs when the bleaching agents come in contact with your gums, making them red and swollen and causing inflammation. Dentists usually take care when applying the bleaching agent, but sometimes it may reach the gums and cause irritation. You can relieve the symptoms by rinsing your mouth with salt water or a topical numbing agent. Note that if you already have gum disease, you are more likely to experience discomfort.
- Enamel erosion.
Overusing bleach or getting tooth whitening treatments too often can lead to enamel erosion. This is because the products used in the procedure contain strong and abrasive ingredients and can eat away the top layer of your teeth. When the enamel is eroded, it can expose the softer layer underneath, known as the dentin. When hot or cold food items touch the dentin, it stimulates your nerves and causes sensitivity.
- Over whitening.
Sometimes teeth whitening procedures can lead to over-whitening of the teeth, especially when patients use at-home kits. People often use more products than suggested in an effort to achieve results faster. Using too much product can make your teeth appear translucent and expose the yellow layer of the dentin. Your teeth may appear blue or gray.
- Allergic reactions.
Some people may experience an allergic reaction to the products used in teeth whitening. Symptoms may include hives, difficulty breathing, and swelling of the face, lips, and tongue. That is why sharing your medical history with your dentist before the treatment is important.