Can Teeth Whitening Cause Permanent Sensitivity?

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 teeth whitening

Oral Hygiene plays an essential role in overall well-being. It not only helps to keep your oral health intact but also helps sustain the appearance of your teeth. Teeth Whitening procedures have become immensely popular among the various other dental treatments. It provides a clear smile and boosts confidence. However, many people still hesitate to get teeth whitening due to permanent sensitivity concerns. Here is a complete guide regarding teeth whitening procedures and sensitivity that will help to get over your concerns.

What is Teeth Sensitivity?

teeth sensitivity
A girl feeling teeth sensitivity due to cold water.

Teeth Sensitivity occurs when dentin, an underlying layer of teeth, is exposed. It can be caused due to various reasons, including gum disease, a tooth cavity, a cracked tooth, or a recent ongoing dental procedure. Having a sensitive tooth causes pain or discomfort whenever there is an intake of hot or cold food and beverages. It can also be caused due to air, sometimes while brushing teeth.

Process of Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening is a process that helps get your teeth white and remove any stains. It is obtained with the help of peroxide-based bleaching agents. The process can be concluded through the help of a dentist or even at home. However, if you want to conduct the process of teeth whitening at home, you must be aware of the quantity of the solution and how long to keep it to get the best possible results.

Teeth Whitening in Office:

If you look forward to removing the tooth discoloration and making your teeth brighter, consult your dentist. Teeth whitening can be done at home. However, those who want to seek professional help can get an appointment. In Office teeth, whitening helps to get the procedure much more efficiently. Moreover, the solution used by dental professionals is known to be stronger, which further helps intensify and speed up the whole process.

At Home teeth whitening:

Apart from the in-office teeth whitening process, one can also get at-home teeth whitening with the help of a teeth whitening kit. There are different procedures to get teeth whitening at home. Some common methods used for whitening teeth at home include teeth whitening strips, whitening gels, best-whitening toothpaste, whitening gums, and more.

What causes discoloration of teeth?

The following can be the possible causes of tooth discoloration:

  • Age

    Your enamel can get stained as you age, resulting in yellowish teeth.

  • Poor Dental Hygiene

    Not brushing in routine can leave stains and plaque.

  • Genetic Predisposition

    Genetics often impact your teeth color.

  • Certain Medications

    Antihistamine usage in routine can often cause yellowish teeth.

  • Lifestyle Habits

    Excessive intake of soda, coffee, or smoking.

Who can get Teeth Whitening?

Patients who suffer to get their teeth cleaned even after regular brushing can opt for teeth whitening. People with healthy gums are considered an ideal candidate for teeth whitening. However, pregnant ladies, breastfeeding mothers, and people who have dental bridges or crowns are required to wait and consult their dentist first before getting whitening. Several people are allergic to peroxides which is why the ideal way to proceed is upon consultation.

How long does the teeth whitening procedure last?

Teeth whitening can be done with the help of a professional or at home. However, Teeth whitening conducted by a professional can last longer than at-home teeth whitening procedures.

Is there any impact of Teeth Whitening on Sensitive teeth?

Teeth whitening is a popular dental procedure that helps to get perfect teeth. However, it should be noted that you may get sensitive teeth after whitening. It results from the solution of a mixture of carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide. These solutions assist by forming chemical reactions with the chromogens. It helps in getting a lighter tone of your teeth.

However, exposure to these peroxides can sometimes result in inflammation of the tooth nerve or pulp, which is why patients often complain about pain after teeth whitening or sensitivity post-whitening. It can also get triggered by air, intake of cold beverages, acidic foods, or sometimes even brushing your teeth.

What are the side effects of Teeth Whitening?

Teeth whitening is a dental procedure that must be carried out with proper instructions. The common side effects that one can expect following teeth whitening include the following.

  • Gum Irritation
  • Teeth sensitivity
  • Slight Discomfort
  • Rough Teeth
  • Tingling Sensation

However, these side effects are mild and temporary and must be relieved within a few days. Patients are also advised to post teeth whitening care to avoid the above-mentioned effects.

How much does Teeth Whitening cost?

Teeth whitening cost varies depending on the whitening method you opt for. However, the cost of teeth whitening at the dentist is higher than at home teeth whitening methods. Professional teeth whitening costs more but you get teeth whitening from a dentist which is known for proven long-lasting effects as compared to at-home tooth whitening procedures.

Tips to avoid Teeth Sensitivity following Teeth Whitening

It is common to feel slight pain, discomfort, and tooth sensitivity after a whitening procedure. However, patients can look forward to the following tips to help avoid or minimize tooth Sensitivity.

Avoid Foods that trigger

Extremely cold or hot foods result in tooth sensitivity, especially after teeth whitening, which is why avoiding such food that triggers Sensitivity is recommended.

Choose a desensitizing toothpaste

If you have a sensitive tooth, you must use a desensitizing toothpaste. Even after tooth whitening, you become more prone to tooth sensitivity, so upon your dentist’s recommendation, you must choose a desensitizing toothpaste.

Proper Oral Hygiene

Following proper oral hygiene can help minimize sensitivity issues. Moreover, it also helps to clear any stains timely reducing the chances of discoloration and plague.

Avoid Rough Brushing

If you have undergone a tooth whitening procedure, you are advised to use a soft-bristled brush. If you opt for a toothbrush with hard bristles, it can further damage your gums and enamel.


To conclude, teeth whitening is perfect for people with discoloration or stains. It can help to get your teeth cleaned and have a perfect and confident smile. There are different methods to get your teeth cleaned, which can be done with the help of a dental professional or even at home. It has been perceived that teeth whitening can lead to permanent tooth sensitivity. However, patients are informed that teeth whitening procedures only cause a little discomfort in some patients, which is also relieved in a few days. Patients can have a thorough follow-up to avoid tooth sensitivity after whitening. Moreover, you may consult a dental expert if you get unbearable pain after teeth whitening.


1. Does teeth whitening result in teeth sensitivity?

Sometimes, patients feel mild pain and discomfort following teeth whitening. However, this doesn’t last longer than a few days and can be relieved in different ways.

2. Can a person with sensitive teeth undergo teeth whitening?

Patients with sensitive teeth can still undergo teeth whitening. However, any procedure adopted must be handled with care. And, patients are also required to follow certain tips to minimize any pain and discomfort.

3. Are there any side effects of teeth whitening?

Teeth whitening when done right is often regarded as safe. However, some patients can have temporary sensitivity or patients with sensitive teeth can feel little discomfort post teeth whitening.

4. What are the tips to minimize tooth sensitivity following teeth whitening?

Patients are often recommended to avoid cold beverages and foods, use a desensitizing toothpaste, and use a soft bristled brush following teeth whitening to reduce the chances of sensitivity.

5. Can we get teeth whitening at home?

Yes, there are different common methods to get teeth whitening at home. It includes whitening strips, whitening toothpastes, tray-based teeth bleaching, or whitening rinses.

  • Emily Johnson

    Emily Johnson

    Content Contributor

    Emily Johnson is a pediatric dentist with a passion for making dental care accessible and enjoyable for children. She has recently transitioned into health journalism. With years of hands-on healthcare experience, she provides a unique perspective in her writing, focusing on patient care, medical treatments, and nursing practices. Johnson has... Read More

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  • Dr. Anas Athar

    Dr. Anas Athar

    Medical Reviewer

    Dr. Anas Athar has earned a reputation as a sought-after Orthodontist with nearly two decades of dentistry experience. He is known for being the only dual-trained Oral and Maxillofacial Radiologist and Orthodontist throughout Texas. His primary specialties include but are not limited to clear aligners, interceptive orthodontics, advanced dental imaging, dental sleep... Read More

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