teeth whiteningTeeth whitening is a cosmetic dental care procedure many Americans choose to use to improve their self-confidence. Up to 82.5% of patients who chose to have teeth whitening done by a professional cosmetic dentist noticed a visual difference.

However, while teeth whitening can do incredible aesthetic things for your smile, sensitivity can sometimes be a problem directly after the procedure. Sensitivity is a normal byproduct of many dental procedures such as teeth bonding, veneers, or a dental bridge. Yet its normalcy doesn’t make minor pain and sensitivity any less annoying to deal with.

Fortunately, there are ways you can help to reduce your sensitivity after your teeth whitening procedure.

Avoid things that may irritate your teeth
It may seem like a no-brainer, but avoiding the things that may irritate your teeth after a regular dentist appointment can also help to reduce your teeth sensitivity after having them whitened.

Avoid eating food that’s relatively high in either temperature, but especially food that’s cold. Your teeth are already naturally sensitive to cold things. After a dental procedure such as whitening, they’re incredibly sensitive. Hold off on eating popsicles or ice cream sandwiches until your teeth have had a couple of hours to recover.

This rule of thumb also goes for brushing your teeth. Wait a couple of hours after the procedure for your teeth to recuperate before you mess with them. Brushing your teeth directly after they’ve come into contact with acidic bleaching agents can cause pores to open on your teeth, exposing your dentin to open air. This increases the risk of sensitivity so wait a while before brushing.

Treat the sensitivity, don’t just avoid it
Aside from giving your teeth time to recover after whitening, it’s also important to treat the sensitivity. Two weeks before your whitening procedure, use a desensitizing toothpaste or a toothpaste with a greater amount of fluoride. This will help to reduce the risk of sensitivity after whitening.

If your teeth sensitivity begins to impact your lifestyle and what you eat on a regular basis, be sure to discuss your dental care with your cosmetic dentist. A professional opinion is great for any occasion, but especially for your teeth.