Congratulations on your new white smile!
Professional teeth whitening helps your smile look bright and stain-free but the reality is, they won’t stay pearly white forever –especially if you keep up old habits. Following your teeth whitening appointments, an aftercare routine is a good idea.
In-office teeth whitening is an effective and safe way to whiten your teeth by multiple shades in a single appointment. Knowing what to expect and how to care for your smile after your treatment will help everything go more smoothly and will ensure your teeth stay white for much longer, allowing you to continue loving your smile for years to come.
What can I expect following my whitening procedure?
To achieve a brighter, whiter smile
One of the most common side effects of in-office teeth whitening is sensitive teeth. This is a short-term side effect that should go away in 24 hours. In the meantime, you can use a toothpaste that’s designed to help reduce tooth sensitivity.
In addition, teeth whitening only removes existing stains from your teeth; it doesn’t protect against future stains. Thankfully, there are steps you can follow to protect your teeth from future staining and ensure they stay white for as long as possible
TOUCH UP TREATMENTS / HOME TRAYS
You’ll also have more success keeping your teeth white if you get touch-up treatments, though how often you need them depends upon your habits and how quickly your teeth are picking up new stains as a result.
Examples of what you should avoid!
- Coffee – we understand that this may be a hard one to cut out entirely. If you need some to get through the day then add milk to help reduce the staining effect. Also limit the amount you drink to no more than two cups as studies show staining increases the more cups you drink.
- Tea – dark tea is actually worse for your teeth’s colour than coffee. Again if you can’t fight the craving then follow the same advice as above.
- Wine – red wine’s acidity and dark colours make it a high-risk drink. While white wine can’t stain your teeth itself the acidity weakens your enamel increasing your vulnerability to other staining foods.
- Fizzy Drinks – acidic and full of colouring avoid these drinks entirely if possible.
- Fruit Juices – avoid these drinks because of their high acidity.
- Dark condiments – soy sauce balsamic vinegar even tomato sauce all carry risks for their colour and acidity.
- Dark Fruits – same as above try to avoid fruits such as blackberries.
- Curry – if you’ve seen how curry stains your pots and pans just think of what it will do to your teeth. Definitely avoid this food after treatment to be safe.
- Sweets and Chocolate – think of the colour of your tongue after eating some sweets. Your teeth are at risk from staining in the exact same way.
Manage Sensitivity !
- Be very careful about the food you eat for the first 48 hours after your treatment because your teeth will be more vulnerable to staining than usual.
- Avoid acidic or colorful foods in general sticking instead to light-colored fruits and vegetables high-calcium foods like plain white yogurt and chicken.
- Once the first 48 hours have passed you can go back to eating colorful foods in moderation but you should still do your best to limit foods and drinks that are known to stain teeth.
- One way to reduce staining while still enjoying a good dark-colored drink is to use a straw because it limits the contact the liquid has with your teeth.
- Brushing your teeth and sticking to a great oral hygiene routine can also help you fight off surface stains and keep your teeth white.
Caring for Your Revitalized Smile
- Brush with a desensitizing toothpaste – Start using a desensitizing toothpaste approximately 10 days before your procedure. These toothpastes will help block pain signals from the surface of your tooth to its inner nerve. Leave the toothpaste on the surface of your teeth for a few minutes before rinsing in order to achieve maximum effectiveness.
- Apply a desensitizing gel – This should be done before your treatment. Leave the gel on your teeth for the recommended length of time and then rinse with water.
- Take pain medication – Taking over-the-counter pain medication such as ibuprofen prior to your teeth whitening procedure can help minimize sensitivity and discomfort. You can continue taking this medication after your treatment to manage any lingering sensitivity.
- Avoid hot and cold foods and drinks – Your teeth will be most sensitive during the first 1-2 days after your treatment. Make sure to avoid foods and beverages that are either very hot or very cold during this time. Instead choose room temperature foods and drinks.
- Avoid acidic foods and drinks – Acidic foods and drinks such as sodas and citrus fruits can irritate your mouth increasing the sensitivity you experience.
- Brush gently – Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and rinse with lukewarm water to minimize sensitivity.
- Drink through a straw – Drinking through a straw right after a whitening treatment will help prevent the liquid from making contact with your teeth which can minimize discomfort.
Teeth Whitening trays +
Whitening tray Maintenace
Clean teeth before whitening: Brushing and flossing prior to each whitening session leads to better results. Make sure the mouth tray fits by trying it on without any whitening product on it. The mouth tray should be dry before applying the whitening gel to it. Moisture can diminish its effectiveness.
Do not overfill the mouth tray: Using more than the recommended amount of the whitening product will not lead to faster results, but it can lead to the whitening product getting into the gums, where it can cause irritation.
Insert the mouth tray properly: The tray should be pushed firmly against teeth. Any excess gel seeping over the top should be wiped off. The mouth tray should be kept in the mouth for about 2- 6 hours each use. People who develop sensitive teeth after starting whitening treatments should cut back to an hour per whitening session.
Rinse afterward: Rinse with water after removing the mouth tray, and avoid brushing or flossing. This can damage teeth enamel that has already been weakened by the treatment. Some users might notice white splotches on their teeth after whitening them. These spots are caused by teeth being dehydrated, and they should disappear within an hour. It is best to avoid things that can stain teeth, like coffee, during this period.
Clean the mouth tray: A toothbrush can be used to clean the mouth tray while running water over it. It should be stored in a dry, cool place far from direct sunlight or heat. The whitening product should be stored in the refrigerator to increase its longevity by up to a year.
To help prevent sensitivity after whitening you can place a desensitising toothpaste of our choice within the trays and continue to wear them for 10-15 mins after the whitening process. Store your whitening gel in the fridge until next use.
How long will I use my whitening trays?
For an initial whitening treatment aim to complete 10 sessions of whitening.
Whether this is consecutive days or alternative days due to sensitivity. If your desired color is reached before 10 sessions, you can stop earlier.
Most patients will need touch ups every 4-6 months for 1-2 sessions.
For 15% Opalescence whitening gel: Keep the tray in your mouth for 4-6 hours.