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Things You Need to Know to Prepare for Teeth Whitening

Things You Need to Know to Prepare for Teeth Whitening

Attaining brighter teeth can enhance your appearance and boost your confidence. Wondering how to begin your teeth whitening journey? We’ve gathered all the necessary details for a seamless experience. Soon, you’ll be proudly showcasing your radiant smile!

Schedule a Dental Checkup

Before you book an appointment for teeth whitening, it is important to schedule a dental checkup with your dentist first. This is the best way to determine if your teeth are healthy enough and safe to undergo the whitening treatment.

During your checkup, your dentist will review any existing oral health conditions or other factors that could interfere with teeth whitening as well as assess whether in-office whitening or at-home whitening would be recommended. This also gives them the opportunity to make any necessary corrections, such as filling cavities or treating gum disease. Additionally, they can find and fix many other potential issues before they become more serious problems down the road.

Opt for Pre-Treatment Teeth Cleaning

Having a pre-treatment dental cleaning prior to whitening your teeth is vital for achieving long-term, vibrant results. Teeth cleaning includes removing plaque, tartar, and stains from the surface of your teeth – this helps to refresh any areas stained by coffee, tea, or smoking.

Additionally, it removes bacteria that can create an unpleasant odor when whitening.

Professional cleaning also helps to ensure that no products used during the whitening process cause damage to your tooth enamel. Your dentist will often design custom trays for your teeth which create a seal around each tooth and keeps the product in place so that it won’t come into contact with other areas of your mouth. This serves as an effective means of preventing any potential damage that may otherwise occur as a result of bleaching agents used in the teeth whitening process.

Desensitize Sensitive Teeth

If you have sensitive teeth, you may need to take some steps to desensitize them ahead of teeth whitening. This can help reduce sensitivity or severe pain associated with whitening procedures.

A few methods for desensitizing your teeth include:

  • Using toothpaste formulated for sensitive teeth: Many toothpaste brands offer desensitizing formulas, which contain compounds like potassium nitrate and strontium chloride that help block the nerve pathways causing sensitivity.
  • Trying fluoride treatments: If over-the-counter options don’t work, your dentist may give you a prescription fluoride paste or gel that you can apply to your teeth at home after brushing.
  • Using at-home desensitizers: Your dentist may also prescribe products that create a barrier over exposed dentin, providing relief from sensitivity and helping minimize pain due to whitening treatments.

Use a Shade Guide

The use of a shade guide is an important part of preparing for teeth whitening. A shade guide is a color chart used to determine the current shade of your teeth so that it can be compared with the results after the procedure. This will ensure that you have an accurate representation of what your teeth look like before and after.

There are a few different types of shade guides available. Many dentists prefer to use a tooth-shade guide consisting of 16 color samples, organized in a plastic ring and called “Vita Classic” or “Vita 3D-MASTER Shade Guide”. Other dentists may opt for a disposable paper version which consists of eight colored tabs affixed to cardboard strips or paper sheets, known as “Shade Tabs”, or “Shadester”. All versions will enable your dentist to match the color of your teeth at the start and end of treatment.

The use of a shade guide allows for precise adjustment in order to reach the desired result from any given teeth whitening procedure, ensuring an accurate comparison between pre and post-treatment shades with an industry-approved method. Your dentist will use these methods combined with other factors such as lifestyle, medications, or genetics along with their experience to best advise you on which treatment may be right for you before you begin.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are teeth whitening?

Teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental procedure used to lighten the color of your teeth and remove stains and discoloration. It is typically done in-office by a dental professional, but there are also at-home whitening kits available.

What are the risks of teeth whitening?

Although teeth whitening is generally safe, there are some risks to consider. These include sensitivity, discomfort, gum irritation, and damage to existing dental work. It is important to speak to your dentist to make sure that teeth whitening is the right choice for you.

How long do teeth whitening last?

The effects of teeth whitening typically last between six months and two years, depending on the type of whitening treatment you choose and the habits you follow after treatment. To make sure your teeth stay white for as long as possible, it is important to avoid foods and beverages that can stain your teeth and to practice good oral hygiene.


In conclusion, teeth whitening can be a great way to enhance the look of your smile, but it’s important to do your research and consult with a dentist before proceeding. Make sure you understand the cost implications, both for materials and professional services that may be necessary for your particular situation. Be aware that professional booths or strips are the safest and most effective methods of whitening teeth. The results of DIY kits may not last as long, and could potentially cause damage to gums or enamel if used incorrectly or too frequently.

Finally, talk to your dentist about any underlying conditions such as tooth sensitivity that may impact the effectiveness of any teeth-whitening procedure you consider. With careful preparation, you can get the perfect smile you have always wanted!

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