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Risks associated with teeth whitening
16 Oct 2021
Risks associated with teeth whitening image

Table of Contents

What causes your teeth to change colour?
What are the options for whiter teeth?
What are the long term effects of tooth whitening?


Everyone needs to have a bright sparkling smile and for that, you need to take proper care of your teeth. There are many teeth whitening options available. Some of them are simple home treatments and in some cases, we need professional help.

But we should consider many facts before whitening our teeth. Is teeth whitening safe? There are many side effects associated with teeth whitening and procedures. In this article, we are going to discuss all that you need to know about teeth whitening and the risks associated.

What causes your teeth to change colour?

Before talking about risks, let us know the cause. Human teeth can become discolored due to a variety of reasons. We can classify the discoloration of teeth into two types and they are :

1. Intrinsic discolouration

  • Intrinsic discolouration in teeth occurs from within the teeth. 
  • The causes can be infection, ageing, childhood illness and medications
  • Intrinsic discolouration needs professional help such as bleaching

2. Extrinsic discolouration

  •  Extrinsic discolouration occurs due to external factors 
  • These factors include food, beverages and smoking habits
  • Extrinsic discolouration can be solved by whitening toothpastes and other home remedies

What are the options for whiter teeth?

This is the first question that you should ask yourself when you think about teeth whitening. You can seriously damage your teeth if you do not undergo a suitable method for teeth whitening. The three general methods used for whitening teeth are:

  • Conducted by your dentist
  • Recommended by your dentist to use at home
  • Adopted by yourself without medical advice and consultation

The third category can be very useful with proper knowledge. But sometimes improper self-used techniques can be very risky and hence it is very important to understand home remedies before adopting them. You can choose these techniques according to:

  • The type of discolouration 
  • The cost involved and comfortability
  • Age
  • Dental history

So it is very beneficial if you discuss the best treatment or home remedy that you can about to make your smile brighter. You should also remember that patience is the key because teeth whitening can sometimes require more time.

What are the long term effects of tooth whitening?

Most teeth whitening techniques are harmless and do not cause any long-term or short-term side effects. But sometimes you may experience some mild side effects such as:

1. Teeth sensitivity

Sometimes, your teeth can become more sensitive to teeth whitening treatments. Teeth sensitivity can be a problem in cases where you use teeth bleaching for whitening teeth. Teeth bleaching is used by 90% of people who try different teeth whitening methods.

Medical researches show that teeth sensitivity occurs due to our pulp’s exposure to peroxide as a result of the treatment. But the severity of tooth sensitivity can vary due to various reasons such as:

  • Concentration of peroxide
  • Restoration procedure used
  • Light intensity for treatment

Most times sensitivity will go away on its own. But if you are suffering from high tooth sensitivity, consider doing:

  • Using sensitivity repair toothpaste
  • Wearing strips for a short time
  • Using the fluid product to remineralize teeth
  • Stoping teeth whitening procedures and techniques for a short time
  • Use mouth wash that prevents sensitivity

2. Gum irritation

Gum irritation is another common side effect of teeth whitening. Some teeth whitening procedures can irritate the gums. Treatments including toothpaste with a high level of bleaching agents when coming in contact with gums cause irritation.

To prevent this your medical health expert will use special gels which act as a protective shield. Due to the action of the gel, your gum will stay away from the side effects of teeth whitening procedures.

We had only mentioned some of the most common side effects and there can be more side effects due to teeth whitening. Side effects depend on the methods and health nature of the person using the particular treatment method.

If you are experiencing any side effects or if you have any queries regarding dental health, please do consult dentistry as soon as possible. So let’s have a healthy future with a bright smile.

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