Common side effects of Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening uses a whitening agent to oxidize the stains in the enamel of the teeth. Depending on the strength of the oxidizing agent and the sensitivity of the teeth, there are some side effects of this process. The more gentle over the counter products have less side effects, but they also are much less effective at whitening the teeth. They can produce some mild sensitivity that usually goes away on its own without any treatment. The higher strength professional teeth whitening can cause some increased sensitivity in the teeth, to things like cold or air. This sensitivity can be treated with a topical fluoride treatment. Usually the agent is applied in custom made mouth trays to hold the whitening agent. Once the agent is used, it can be rinsed and the fluoride gel applied. The in-office professional whitening or "laser whitening," also known by a popular brand name Zoom, can cause some more intense sensitivity even explained as a shooting pain or "zinger." This can be treated with an over the counter anti-inflammatory medicine like Tylenol or Advil.