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Whitening Strips for Sensitive Teeth

Are whitening strips for sensitive teeth safe?
Priya Johnson May 12, 2019
The market is flooded with all kinds of teeth whiteners to preserve the glorious smiles on faces. We have the whitening toothpastes, whitening sprays, whitening strips, non-moldable tray bleaching system, boil and bite bleaching systems, etc.

What is a Whitening Strip?

Teeth whitening strips are the second most common type of home teeth whitening. These strips are sheer, almost invisible strips coated with peroxide-based whitening gel, which acts as a bleaching agent. The whitening course using whitening strips consists of a 14 day period, wherein one has to apply the strip onto the teeth for 30 minutes, twice a day.
Immediate results are seen in the next few days and the whitening effect lasts for about 4 months. It is this instant result phenomenon that causes myriads of people to flock to drug stores in order to buy these strips. 

Whitening Strips for Sensitive Teeth

Several people experience sensitive teeth after whitening procedures. This sensitivity arises due to the activity of peroxide on the teeth. Teeth begin to respond overly to hot and cold stimulus, for example, consumption of hot or cold foods and beverages causes the tooth's nerve to get inflamed.
However, tooth sensitivity experienced is believed to be very mild, not deleterious and recedes in a few days. On the other hand, some people possess extra sensitive teeth, which respond overly to temperature changes.
Some people have sensitive teeth because they are born with it, while some develop sensitive teeth due to harsh brushing of teeth. Vigorous and harsh brushing conduces to wearing down of the tooth enamel and revealing of the dentin. Teeth sensitivity also increases with age.
People with sensitive teeth, gums, defective restoration, etc. need to be exceedingly careful while selecting a method to bleach their sensitive teeth. Teeth bleaching method must be chosen, only after consulting the dentist.
Moreover, as whitening strips contain peroxide as the whitening agent, people allergic to peroxide should refrain from using them. When healthy teeth become susceptible to sensitization after use of whitening strips, already sensitive teeth will only get worse by use of whitening strips. Refrain from this if you have sensitive teeth.

Sensitive Teeth Whitening Methods

So if whitening strips are not good whitening methods for sensitive teeth, then what should one do to whiten sensitive teeth? One may wonder 'Can sensitive teeth be bleached at all?' Well, the answer is 'do not worry!' There are 2 teeth whitening methods that are specifically aimed to whiten sensitive teeth. They are:

Dentist's Chairside Bleaching

In this bleaching method, dentist uses a bleaching agent that contains only 10% of hydrogen peroxide. The low peroxide content is just enough to whiten the teeth and at the same time prevents the teeth from becoming more sensitive. During the procedure, the dentist will apply a rubber shield or protective gel to protect the overly sensitive gums and tissues.
He will then apply the 10% whitening solution on the teeth. He may even speed up the whitening process by shining light onto the gel applied teeth. The duration of this teeth whitening method takes about 30 minutes to an hour to complete.

In-Office Bleaching

In this method of teeth whitening procedure, the dentist makes a mouthpiece tray after taking the impression of one's teeth. This is also called a customized mouthguard and it fits perfectly onto the teeth. A gel containing carbamide peroxide is added to the tray and the mouthpiece is worn by the patient. This bleaching method lasts for almost two weeks.
If you have sensitive teeth and still want to use whitening strips, make sure you reduce the total time (by half), the bleaching agent is placed onto your teeth. Appropriation of using whitening gels, whitening toothpastes, whitening strips for sensitive teeth, whitening teeth rinse, etc. will depend on the level of sensitivity of one's teeth.
Moreover, one can try various home remedies to whiten the teeth naturally. Before resorting to any method, it is crucial to let the dentist examine your teeth. He will be able to guide you better, regarding which teeth whitening procedure is good for you. Make sure you pay heed to all the dentist's recommendation after bleaching your sensitive teeth.