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Many of our Cambridge dental patients who seek our doctors out for teeth whitening have heard that, for some patients, the procedure can result in increased teeth sensitivity. This side effect may make it sensitive for some patients to eat or drink cold, hot and/or sweet food or beverages. Just how long will this sensitivity last? The answer is – it all depends.

Why Tooth Sensitivity Is Variable After a Teeth Whitening Session

Some of our dental patients will never experience teeth sensitivity after having our doctors perform a teeth whitening session. Others will. The reason is that it all depends on the current state of your teeth.

You see, everyone who comes to our doctors for a teeth whitening treatment in our Cambridge office has a unique situation. Some patients have darker or more yellow teeth. Others don’t. Some patients have more remaining tooth enamel and dentin. Others have less. How sensitive your teeth will be, or whether they’ll even be sensitive at all, will depend on your individualized case.

Assessing Your Teeth Sensitivity Risk

Our doctors always want to inform our Cambridge patients of any potential side effects of the treatment they are having performed at our practice. Such is the same with sensitivity after teeth whitening. Because of this, our doctors always perform an evaluation of your teeth before moving forward with the cosmetic procedure, to ensure that you are an adequate candidate for teeth whitening. Determining your eligibility includes:

  • A full teeth examination
  • Assessing the amount of enamel and dentin you have remaining
  • Discussing with you how white you want your teeth to be
  • Asking you whether or not you already have sensitive teeth

The Length of Your Potential Teeth Sensitivity

Teeth sensitivity after a professional whitening treatment can last a few days or weeks, or up to several months after. The length of your potential teeth sensitivity all depends on you and your unique case. While it’s impossible for our doctors to pinpoint how long your teeth may be sensitive, your existing teeth condition and previous sensitivity history may clue them into whether or not you’ll experience teeth sensitivity after a whitening session.

Determining if Teeth Whitening Is Right for You

If, after you’ve been cleared for treatment, you are concerned about teeth sensitivity, the decision to proceed with treatment will be entirely up to you. Simply coming in for a consultation doesn’t obligate you to move forward with the treatment. Knowing that you may experience some sensitivity after your procedure, it’s really up to you whether or not you’re willing to trade some sensitivity for the brighter smile you desire. For many of our dental patients, the answer to this question is “Yes!”

Schedule a Teeth Whitening Consultation Today

To determine if you’re a candidate for teeth whitening, and to assess your risk for post-treatment sensitivity, you’ll need to visit our doctors for an examination first.

To schedule this appointment, call our Cambridge office today at (617) 492-5081.

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