I get a lot of questions from patients about the safety of teeth whitening. Teeth yellow and stain over time due to age, and external factors such as coffee and tea. While there are no health benefits to whitening, many patients feel they cold benefit from a touch up now and then.

I whiten my teeth from time to time in a safe manner. I do not condone in-office whitening as it is very concentration and can be too harsh on teeth, causing sensitivity. Yet, over the counter strips may not be strong enough for most patients. A happy medium is a whitening tray made by your dentist customized for your teeth. Your dentist will give you a tube of whitening gel (I recommend carbon peroxide 10% or 16%) to take home with you. The nice thing about these trays is that you can use them forever. When you run out of gel, just purchase another tube.

When applying the gel to your trays, remember a little goes a long way. Wipe away any excess to avoid gum sensitivity. If you feel your teeth are particularly sensitive, use a sensitivity toothpaste a couple of weeks before whitening, Start with a little bit of gel and work your way up. Talk to your dentist about your safe whitening options and reduce your chance of stains by brushing regularly and visiting your dentist for regular cleanings.

To your health,

Dr. Yasmin