Tooth Sensitivity in Spring Branch & Memorial, Houston, TX

Teeth bleaching, also known as teeth whitening, is a popular cosmetic dental procedure performed at Lifeworks Dental. It’s an effective way to brighten your smile and remove stains. However, one common side effect that some patients experience is tooth sensitivity. This blog post will delve into why this happens, how the mechanism works, and what you can do to manage this sensitivity during and after the bleaching process.

Why Does Sensitivity Occur in Teeth Bleaching?

Tooth sensitivity during and after teeth bleaching occurs due to the penetration of the bleaching agent, usually a form of peroxide, into the tooth’s enamel and dentin layer. The dentin contains tiny tubes or canals that lead to the tooth’s nerve center, known as the pulp. When the bleaching agent gets into these tubes, it can cause the tooth to become sensitive to temperature changes, such as cold air or water.

The Mechanism Behind Tooth Sensitivity in Teeth Bleaching

The bleaching process works by breaking down stains within the tooth to make it appear whiter. The bleaching agent penetrates the enamel to reach the discolored molecules inside the tooth. As the agent reacts with these molecules, it breaks the bonds that hold them together, effectively whitening the tooth.

However, this process can also allow the bleaching agent to reach the dentin layer beneath the enamel. The dentin is connected to the pulp, which houses the tooth’s nerve endings. When these nerve endings are exposed to the bleaching agent, it can result in a sensation of sensitivity or even sharp, sudden pain known as “zingers.”

Managing Sensitivity During and After Teeth Bleaching

If you experience sensitivity or zingers during the bleaching process, it’s important to pause the treatment for several days. This allows the teeth to recover and the sensitivity to subside. During this time, brushing with fluoride gels can help to seal up the pores in the dentin and alleviate the sensitivity. Fluoride can also help to remineralize the teeth, strengthening them against sensitivity.

After the bleaching process, any remaining sensitivity should go away within 2-3 days. If sensitivity persists beyond this time, it’s important to contact Lifeworks Dental for a follow-up appointment.

How Long Can Sensitivity Occur For?

The duration of sensitivity can vary from person to person. Some people may experience sensitivity only during the bleaching process, while others may continue to experience it for a few days afterward. In general, however, any sensitivity caused by teeth bleaching should subside within a few days after the treatment is completed.

In conclusion, while tooth sensitivity can be an uncomfortable side effect of teeth bleaching, it is usually temporary and can be managed effectively. At Lifeworks Dental, we are committed to ensuring that your teeth whitening experience is as comfortable and successful as possible. If you have any concerns about tooth sensitivity or teeth bleaching, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.