If you have stained teeth, then you may decide that an at-home whitening is your best option. While this may seem ideal, it is a much better idea to have your teeth professionally attended to by a dentist. Specifically, there are certain things your dentist can do for you before and during the treatment that can help you retain healthy teeth.

Full Dental Examination

Before you can undergo a teeth whitening treatment, your dentist will carry out a complete dental exam. During the exam, the professional will investigate the teeth for signs of cavities. This is an extremely important step in the examination process, and cavities will be treated before your teeth are whitened. If the cavities are not treated, then the whitening solution can seep deep into the tooth dentin. This can cause the tooth to weaken, and there is a possibility that it could crack and break in the future. Also, your tooth can become extremely sensitive if the whitening solution is able to get inside your tooth. 

If you do decide to treat your teeth at home, then you may make the mistake of applying the whitening gel over a decayed tooth. This can cause the same sorts of issues that a professional whitening can. It is best to avoid this and to seek out care from your dentist, especially if you have not received a dental checkup in some time.

Variable Whitening Strength

If you use a whitening gel at home, then there is typically only one formula strength you can purchase. While the strength of the solution is too weak for most people, it can also be too strong. If your teeth only have a thin layer of dental enamel, then the whitening solution can reach the tooth dentin, seep into the teeth, and damage the tooth pulp. Dental nerves can be damaged as well. This can result in a great deal of pain and soreness.

Your dentist will look at your teeth and the overall thickness of the enamel. If it is thin, then a whitening solution will be formulated for you that is weaker than usual. This will help to remove some of the stains from the teeth while keeping them healthy at the same time.

Sensitivity issues can also occur across the gum line if you invest in at-home whitening treatments. Your dentist will use a protective gel to make sure the soft tissues of your mouth are not exposed to the whitening material. In this way, overall sensitivity is controlled when a professional whitening is scheduled.