Is Teeth Whitening Safe during Pregnancy?

Is Teeth Whitening Safe during Pregnancy?

December 1, 2022

Do you assume you are supposed to appear glowing and gorgeous during your pregnancy? Do you think your appearance is not as described and think you can perhaps change it by getting your teeth whitened? You might expectantly head over to the Brantford dental clinic, hoping to change the looks of your smile by getting your teeth whitened.

You might express shock and surprise when you hear bad news from the dentist advising that teeth whitening treatments are not recommended during pregnancy.

Isn’t Professional Teeth Whitening Safe?

In-office professional teeth whitening is undoubtedly safe and recommended for most with extrinsic and intrinsic stains on teeth. The treatment entails using concentrated hydrogen peroxide to remove stubborn stains on the teeth.

Dentists whiten teeth using different techniques, but generally, the chemicals are applied to your teeth and left on them for about an hour before removal. Therefore, you may need several sessions to derive maximum benefits from the whitening treatment.

No evidence suggests that teeth whitening is unsafe for pregnant women. Unfortunately, no evidence to prove that the treatments are safe is available either. The concentration of hydrogen peroxide used during the treatment is higher than you would usually notice. Therefore most dentists, including the King George dentist, suggest waiting until after pregnancy to get your teeth whitened.

Risk Factors Associated with Teeth Whitening during Pregnancy

During pregnancy, anything associated with your body and health comes with higher risks than average because your pregnancy makes your body vulnerable to injury, illness, and infection. For example, teeth whitening treatments that usually have minimal risks can cause side effects if you are pregnant.

Generally, teeth whitening treatments are not dangerous or proven harmful. However, you might be exposed to the following risks:

  • Tissue Damage: during pregnancy, you become vulnerable to pregnancy gingivitis because of hormonal changes. Swelling and inflammation of your gums are an effect of pregnancy gingivitis. Teeth whitening treatments with concentrated hydrogen peroxide applied on your inflamed gums, and soft tissues can result in discomfort and short-term damage.
  • Tooth Sensitivity: If you have had teeth whitening treatments earlier, you might have wondered why your teeth got sensitive after receiving the treatment. The reason for the sensitivity is that the hydrogen peroxide applied to your teeth seeps through the tooth enamel to irritate your tooth nerves. In addition, during pregnancy, you become sensitive to everything around you and your tooth sensitivity can become heightened from the teeth whitening treatment.
  • Effects On the Baby: no studies on the impact of concentrated hydrogen peroxide on the baby are yet available. The ingredients might be entirely harmless, but dentists cannot be certain. As teeth whitening is an elective cosmetic procedure, you find it beneficial to play safe than risk causing harm to your child.

Can You Use Home Whitening Kits?

No, you cannot use at-home whitening kits purchased over the counter either. At-home whitening kits also contain hydrogen peroxide coupled with other chemicals, ensuring that the risks of whitening your teeth when pregnant remain. Therefore you must refrain from using over-the-counter teeth whitening remedies during pregnancy because you wouldn’t want to feel the after-effects of the treatment or see it affect your baby, would you?

What about Whitening Toothpaste or Mouthwash?

Whitening toothpaste doesn’t contain hydrogen peroxide because they are full of abrasive ingredients to scrub and clean your teeth. Some toothpaste brands might have minimal bleaching agents, but they are unlikely to pose risks so long as you don’t leave them on your teeth for an extended period.

Unfortunately, mouthwashes are different because most products contain alcohol, making it better to skip the product unless necessary for your oral health and recommended by your dentist or physical care provider. However, you must look for alcohol-free mouthwash without considering brands that claim they can whiten your teeth.

If the visit to the dentist in King George disappointed you, you might wonder whether alternative methods are available to whiten your teeth during pregnancy. There are many techniques available to whiten teeth which some claim are effective. Unfortunately, the CDC debunks most DIY methods, such as using lemon juice, activated charcoal, strawberries, et cetera, to whiten teeth because they can potentially cause enamel erosion to make you more vulnerable to dental infections during pregnancy.

If you must get your teeth whitened during this sensitive period, you might as well visit your dentist to receive oral prophylaxis when they also clean your teeth and polish them to brighten your smile by a few shades. After that, you must avoid staining foods and beverages and maintain excellent dental hygiene by brushing twice daily, flossing once and not considering teeth whitening treatments until the end of your pregnancy.

AVA Dentistry suggests not receiving elective cosmetic treatments, including teeth whitening during pregnancy. If you want more information on why they don’t recommend this treatment, kindly arrange an appointment with them for further advice.