Teeth whitening is a common procedure in the dental field today; this is sparked by the increasing need for people to look their best. While the procedure is definitely meant to give you that million-dollar smile that makes you feel like a Hollywood star, it’s also true that teeth whitening is not for everyone. As such, before you decide to go for the procedure, ensure that you consult your dentist to determine whether you are a suitable candidate for the procedure. Proper assessment is the only way to rule out any permanent side effects that may occur.
Whitening should only be done on a healthy set of teeth with healthy gums, which is why a thorough assessment is necessary. During the assessment, your dentist should check for things such as enamel thickness, sensitivity, receding gum, tooth decay and existing restorations including fillings, crowns and veneers. Note that teeth whitening only works on natural teeth and has no effect on caps, crowns, dentures and veneers. This means that should you choose to go for teeth whitening anyway, your natural teeth would become whiter but may not match the color of the caps and crowns.
Oral diseases and conditions could also disqualify as a suitable candidate for teeth whitening. This is because they increase your susceptibility to the possible side effects associated with the procedure, including damaged or inflamed gums, blistering and severe tooth sensitivity. Your dentist should also assess the cause of the discoloration to determine whether it’s only on the surface or inside the teeth. Once the assessment is done, he or she would be able to determine whether teeth whitening would work for you as well as recommend the most suitable treatment for you.
Teeth whitening is generally not recommended for people under the age of 16. During this stage, a person’s dental nerves are enlarged and the procedure could irritate them and result in hyper-sensitivity. Severe pain might be experienced and the future health of the person’s teeth would be compromised. Pregnant women are also advised against teeth whitening since the active ingredients contained in the bleaching products may be absorbed in the mother’s body and harm the unborn child. In fact, the procedure should be completely avoided until the baby is born and weaning is complete.
When whitening is done by untrained individuals, this could easily result in serious side effects. This is as a result of the products used during the procedure, which usually contain oxidizing agents like hydrogen peroxide. When this is used incorrectly and repeatedly, it could cause irreparable damage to your teeth. In fact, products that contain more than 6 percent concentration of the active ingredients used in whitening should only be handled by professionals. It is therefore critical to ensure that you the procedure is done by a registered dental practitioner should you choose to go for it.
For most people, whitening does not pose serious risk if done correctly. However, it is important to take the right steps in ensuring that the procedure does not cause more harm than good.