Sensitivity After Dental Cleanings

Dental cleanings are a critical part of maintaining oral health. However, they can sometimes lead to tooth sensitivity. This discomfort is often due to the exposure of the dentin layer beneath the enamel during teeth whitening procedures, which are typically performed in conjunction with dental cleanings.

Sensitivity After Dental Cleanings

The Science Behind Teeth Whitening Sensitivity

Most teeth whitening treatments, whether conducted at a dentist’s office or through at-home kits, utilize peroxide-based ingredients that bleach your teeth by penetrating into the enamel and breaking down stains. The downside is that this process can also reach the dentin – a layer filled with tiny tubules connecting to your tooth nerve. When exposed to peroxide, these tubules may trigger nerve sensitivity leading to pain.

Preventing Tooth Sensitivity Post-Whitening

Fortunately, there are strategies for preventing or minimizing post-whitening discomfort. Before undergoing any whitening treatment, it’s advisable to consult with your dentist, who will assess your oral health and recommend an appropriate method based on their expertise. In-office professional teeth whitening services tend to have lower chances of causing sensitivity than over-the-counter products because dentists use desensitizing products like special toothpaste or gels before and after treatment.

If you choose an at-home kit instead, consider using it less frequently or for shorter durations. This will allow time for your teeth to adjust, thus reducing potential pain. Post-treatment care includes avoiding extremely hot or cold foods and beverages for several days. Drinking plenty of water during and after treatment helps keep mouth moisture levels high, further reducing sensitivity.

Addressing Persistent Tooth Sensitivity

If severe sensitivity persists beyond a few days post-treatment it’s crucial you contact your dentist immediately as ongoing pain could indicate other underlying dental issues requiring attention such as cavities fractured teeth worn fillings gum disease or worn tooth enamel.

Treating Sensitive Teeth

Depending on the cause of sensitivity, your dentist may suggest a variety of treatments. This can include desensitizing toothpaste that contains compounds to block sensation transmission from the tooth surface to the nerve. You can also try fluoride gel, which strengthens enamel and reduces sensation transmission. For severe sensitivity, you may need crown inlays or bonding to correct flaws or decay-causing sensitivity. In extreme instances, patients may need surgical gum grafts if gums have receded, exposing roots and increasing sensitivity. Finally, a patient may need a root canal for severe, persistent cases.

Proper oral hygiene is key to preventing sensitive-tooth pain following dental cleanings. Always consult with your dentist about any concerns you may have regarding teeth whitening procedures and subsequent sensitivity. They will provide guidance based on their professional expertise, ensuring optimal oral health while minimizing discomfort.