Do Teeth Whitening Products Damage Your Teeth?

brunette women with white teeth on a yellow background

Teeth whitening products can help you get a brighter, more attractive smile, but did you know they can also damage your teeth?

While whitening products are safe to use when handled with care, it’s easier to overdo it than most people realize. Learn more about what kind of damage these products can cause and how you can avoid it in the post below.

The Risks of Whitening

Whitening treatments bleach your smile using hydrogen peroxide and other compounds. These chemicals break down staining compounds that darken your teeth.

Unfortunately, dental bleaches can also:

  • Irritate your gums. Even low concentrations of bleach can irritate your delicate gum tissue. This may make it painful to eat, floss, and brush your teeth for a few days.
  • Make your teeth more sensitive. Exposure to bleach has been found to cause temporary tooth sensitivity for many patients.
  • Damage your tooth enamel. Excessive exposure to bleach can penetrate your tooth enamel and damage the proteins in the tooth. This may weaken your teeth and lead to permanent sensitivity problems.

How Can You Protect Your Oral Health?

There are a few things you can do to keep your teeth and gums safe from whitening treatments’ negative effects.

  • Follow the package’s instructions when using over-the-counter whitening products. These instructions are based on clinical safety guidelines and will protect you from whitening’s more harmful effects if you follow them.
  • If you’re using whitening strips or trays, keep as much of the bleach off your gums as possible. Your gums are much more sensitive to bleach than your teeth are.
  • Don’t use too many treatments. Successive whitening treatments do produce greater effects than a single round of whitening, but the extra bleach takes a toll on your oral health. Try to keep your expectations realistic and use as few whitening treatments as possible to get the results you’re happy with.
  • When you do combine treatments, space them out. The more time you give your teeth and gums to recover between treatments, the less vulnerable they are to damage.

For the Safest Whitening, See Your Dentist

Teeth whitening does pose risks, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up on the pearly white smile you’ve always wanted. At Coscarella Dentistry, we strive to make sure your teeth are both healthy and beautiful. In addition to giving your teeth an immediate whitening boost with a thorough dental cleaning, our staff can give you advice on safe whitening practices that won’t harm your teeth and gums. We can even administer Zoom whitening, a potent in-office treatment that is done under full supervision from dental professionals.

Contact us today to book an appointment at our office and discuss your whitening needs with us; we’ll help you find the solution that works best for you.


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