Why does sensitive teeth whitening seem so complicated?
For starters, many people who whiten their teeth experience some degree of sensitivity. Add to that the folks who don’t know their teeth are sensitive until they try whitening them. Then there are the people who know they have sensitive teeth and will go to the ends of the earth to find pain-free teeth whitening methods.
Whatever your circumstances, you don’t have to suffer when whitening your sensitive teeth. The 5 pain-free sensitive teeth whitening tips you’re about to learn will put the joy back in your quest for a gleaming white smile.
How Teeth Become Sensitive
With up to 1 in 8 adults experiencing tooth sensitivity, let’s take a closer look at what causes this reaction before we talk more about whitening your teeth.
Inside your teeth is a substance called dentin and it’s full of tiny nerve endings. A layer of enamel protects the dentin inside your crown. A layer of cementum protects the dentin extending down towards the root.
What do you think happens when the enamel or cementum wears down? Bingo! The nerve endings in the dentin are exposed so certain foods and beverages cause pain.
So how does the enamel or cementum wear down? Doing any of these things open the floodgates to sensitive teeth.
- Brushing with a hard bristled brush
- Brushing too hard
- Eating and drinking highly acidic foods and beverages regularly
- Grinding your teeth at night
Keep in mind leaky fillings, broken teeth, general tooth decay and gum recession also leave dentin exposed. In addition, you can suffer from temporary sensitivity after dental treatments like crowns, fillings or bleaching.
And that’s our cue to talk about sensitivity from teeth whitening.
Let’s say you’re using gel-filled trays to whiten your teeth. As the whitening gel becomes inactive, the tubules in your teeth (like skin pores) are left exposed which causes dehydration. This shrinks the dentin which applies pressure to the nerve. You know what happens when pressure is applied to a nerve? Ouch!
Saliva production naturally rehydrates your teeth and takes away the pain. This takes several hours for most people but, if you normally have dry mouth, it could take up to 48 hours to rehydrate your teeth.
Now you know how your teeth become sensitive. So let’s talk about making sensitive teeth whitening as pain-free as possible.
Our 5 Best Sensitive Teeth Whitening Tips
1. Avoid Things That Dull Your Teeth
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, according to Ben Franklin. Doing things like letting red wine sit on your teeth for hours only makes whitening your teeth more necessary. Does this mean give up the wine? Of course not. Just brush your teeth after consuming foods and beverages that stain them.
Just like red wine and chocolate stain your teeth, other foods help whiten them. Fruits, like apples and strawberries, and dairy products do a great job of cleaning your teeth, which is a fundamental part of keeping them white.
Hopefully, it goes without saying that you should avoid food and drink that stains your teeth during the treatment period too. We recommend you steer clear of foods that lead to tooth decay, as well, since your teeth will be more susceptible to decay during treatment.
2. Prepare, Prepare, Prepare
Whether or not your teeth are sensitive, take some time to determine the treatment that fits you best. For example, if you tend not to follow through on things, how wise is it to choose a 30-day treatment plan?
If you have a busy lifestyle, will you have the time to visit your dentist for an in-office whitening treatment? Perhaps not, so your preparation should include researching home treatment kits too.
Here’s a big one, regardless of your treatment choice. Brush with a toothpaste for sensitive teeth for one week before treatment and continue using it throughout your treatment regimen.
3. Follow Directions
With any health related product, following the directions on the package is key. It’s especially important for sensitive teeth whitening. For example, keeping the whitening product on your teeth longer than specified is bad news, especially if your teeth are sensitive.
It’s also a bad idea to use an at-home whitening product more often than recommended. Again, this is especially true for sensitive teeth.
Each person is different so each person’s response to whitening products will be different. Trial and error will determine what works best for you.
For example, if you experience sensitivity during an application, you may choose to skip a day before the next treatment. This will allow your teeth to rehydrate properly without affecting earlier treatments in the series.
4. Avoid What Irritates Your Teeth
Two steps forward, one step back is not a good pace where sensitive teeth whitening is concerned. During treatment, why would you do anything to increase tooth sensitivity?
During the treatment duration, just say no to the following food and drink…
- hot and cold beverages
- acidic foods (citrus fruits, pickles, and olives)
- sugary candy, both hard and soft
As we mentioned already, continue using a toothpaste for sensitive teeth during treatment.
5. Choose the Right Product
If an in-office whitening treatment doesn’t work for your budget or lifestyle you still have many at-home options to choose from. Keep these things in mind so you can make the right choice.
Many at-home sensitive teeth whitening products have harmful ingredients that should be avoided. Silica is at the top of the list, followed by polyethylene, and propylene glycol. These ingredients are abrasive which can erode tooth enamel and make sensitivity even worse.
Not all at-home whitening products are the same. Some are for fast whitening, others are professional grade, for the best results, and some are specifically made for sensitive teeth. Know what type of results you’re looking for, before you shop. Buy the product that will give you those results.
Time to Whiten Your Teeth
Armed with our 5 Best Pain-Free Sensitive Teeth Whitening Tips, it’s time to choose the product that’s right for you.
If you want to avoid the harmful ingredients mentioned earlier, have multiple products to choose from and whiten your teeth in a way that fits your lifestyle, the choice is clear – Crest Whitestrips.
Visit our shop for the UK’s #1 Whitening Strips and Crest Whitening Toothpaste at great prices.