Will teeth whitening cause tooth sensitivity?

Will teeth whitening cause tooth sensitivity?

Teeth whitening is an economical and impactful way to enhance your smile. Your cosmetic dentist will consult with you to explain how deep stains, discoloration, streaks, and spots can be eradicated or lightened significantly to brighten teeth for a beautiful smile makeover following treatment with Zoom teeth whitening.


While one of the side effects of whitening may be sensitivity, the zinging sensation or mild discomfort being experienced is due to a weakening or breach in the protective enamel on teeth exposing the microscopic hollow tubes in teeth that lead to dental nerves.
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There are many things that can produce discomfort due to dental sensitivity. Hot and cold temperatures; sweets; spicy foods … but you can lessen the discomfort by using a toothpaste designed to help control tooth sensitivity. Brushing with these products works by closing those hollow tubes to minimize sensitivity.
What actually causes sensitivity? Brushing with a hard bristle toothbrush and a scrubbing technique can wear away protective enamel over time. Patients can successfully clean teeth using a soft bristle toothbrush; an even circular motion focusing on a few teeth at a time reaching the front, back, and top of teeth is ideal.
Teeth grinding can also wear away enamel. Grinding often begins subconsciously during periods of sleep; the patient may be totally unaware this is occurring until a visit to the dentist reveals what is happening.
Tooth decay, gum recession, plaque build-up, or a crack in a tooth are other causes that can result in teeth sensitivity.

Sensitivity Prevention

Before teeth whitening, it is a good idea to visit your dentist to have teeth cleaned to remove plaque that has formed since your previous visit. Dental x-rays and an examination by your dental provider should reveal any potential problems that could result in sensitivity experienced during teeth whitening.
If sensitivity poses a problem, brushing with a toothpaste designed to control sensitivity for a couple of weeks prior to whitening should help. If decay or any other dental problem is present, your dentist will advise you on the correct steps needed.

Teeth Whitening and Cosmetic Dentistry

Porcelain is stain resistant; that also means it will not be impacted with teeth whitening. If you plan to pursue teeth whitening, your cosmetic dentist may recommend whitening first so enhancements in your smile line can be color matched to your newly lightened teeth shade.
To learn more about teeth whitening or to schedule a visit, contact the office of Dr. Philip Kozlow.