The Possible Side Effects of Teeth Whitening

Young woman smiling to reveal her pearly whites after teeth whiteningThere are few procedures in cosmetic medicine as safe, effective, and instantly transformative as professional teeth whitening. For patients whose teeth have been discolored due to certain foods and beverages, tobacco, the effects of time, and other staining agents, professional teeth whitening can dramatically rejuvenate the teeth, whitening them by multiple shades in less than an hour. At Smile Solutions by Emmi Dental Associates, we proudly feature the Zoom!® in-house teeth whitening system along with the Zoom!®, Rembrandt®, and Opalescence® take-home whitening kits to ensure that our patients are able to achieve the best possible results in the safest possible manner.

While the risk of serious complications associated with professional teeth whitening is extremely low, there are side effects associated with the procedure, as with any medical procedure. These side effects are rare, especially among patients who are good candidates for teeth whitening, which is why our dentists carefully screen candidates during consultations at our office in Wilmington. Teeth whitening side effects are also discussed in detail during consultations so that patients can be fully informed about the procedure before committing to it. At Smile Solutions by Emmi Dental Associates, we want our patients to be able to make the most confident decisions possible regarding their dental care, and that means they must understand both the benefits and the risks of the procedures they are about to undergo.

The Most Common Side Effects of Teeth Whitening

Especially when compared to over-the-counter and do-it-yourself teeth whitening solutions, professional teeth whitening is extraordinarily safe and effective. Our dentists further minimize the risk of complications and side effects by:

  • Using proven teeth whitening systems by the most trusted names in the industry, including Zoom!®, Rembrandt®, and Opalescence®.
  • Screening patients thoroughly during their initial consultations, suggesting alternative treatments to patients who are not suitable candidates, such as those with sensitive teeth, gum disease, tooth decay, and other oral health issues.
  • Carefully shielding the gums from the teeth so that they do not come into contact with the hydrogen-peroxide-based whitening gel.
  • Providing patients with comprehensive post-treatment instructions designed to promote comfort and reduce the risk of side effects after the procedure.

Some patients may still experience side effects after teeth whitening; however, these side effects tend to be mild and extremely temporary, generally subsiding within days if not hours of treatment. More common side effects include:

  • Increased tooth sensitivity, especially to hot and cold liquids
  • Sore throat
  • Brief flashes of pain in the front teeth

At other practices, some patients may also be dissatisfied with the results of their treatment, particularly those patients with bluish or greyish stains that tend not to respond as well to teeth whitening treatments. However, at Smile Solutions by Emmi Dental Associates, we are careful to help patients establish realistic expectations for their results. For patients with discoloration that may not respond to teeth whitening, we may recommend alternative treatments, such as porcelain veneers or dental crowns, perhaps in combination with teeth whitening.

Learn More about the Side Effects of Teeth Whitening

To learn more about the possible side effects of teeth whitening, please contact Smile Solutions by Emmi Dental Associates today.