Wisdom Teeth: Removal, Maintenance and Cavity Prevention

4 Reasons to Consult Your Dentist Before Whitening Your Teeth

For many teeth whitening procedures, you'll need to visit your dentist before getting started, but this isn't always the case. Over-the-counter options are also available. Alternatively, you may have already had custom whitening trays made and still have plenty of whitening gel left over from the last time you brightened up your smile.

However, it's important to visit your dentist before you start a round of teeth whitening, even if you have everything you need to get going. Here are just four reasons why.

1. Get a Professional Cleaning

You'll naturally want your teeth to look as good as possible after the whitening procedure has been completed, and dentists can help make that happen by professionally cleaning your teeth before you get started with the whitening itself. Professional cleaning can remove hardened plaque, minor stains, and even small particles of food that cannot be removed simply using your toothbrush at home. This isn't just good for your oral health. It also helps ensure even whitening across all your teeth.

2. Identify Underlying Problems

Any visit to the dentist is going to involve a quick dental exam to check for any underlying problems, and this is certainly something that should be done before you start whitening your teeth. While whitening agents are safe, they could aggravate any existing problems. For example, receding gums can be aggravated by certain whitening agents. Additionally, it's smart to take care of any decay or cavities before you have your teeth whitened. Such issues can significantly exacerbate sensitivity during the whitening process, and it doesn't make much sense to whiten a tooth that's just about to get a filling or a crown.

3. Avoid Misusing Whitening Products

Even if you've whitened your teeth before, it can be easy to make mistakes. If you overuse or misuse whitening products, you can end up inadvertently harming your oral health by damaging your tooth enamel or aggravating your gums. Your dentist can help prevent such issues by talking you through exactly how to use each product. This doesn't just prevent harm—it also helps get the best results possible.

4. Explore Other Options

Finally, keep in mind that the whitening method you decide on before consulting a dentist might not be the best option. Your dentist will be able to talk through your desired results and make sure you go with the right treatment option to meet your needs. They can also suggest other cosmetic procedures that could complement whitening.

Contact your dentist for more information about teeth whitening