Accurately fitting trays are crucial to ensure that the gums are not affected with the teeth whitening gel when home whitening is being carried out. During Power laser whitening your dentist will ensure that the gums are not affected by using a protective barrier.
The material used in take home tooth whitening can actually be beneficial to the gums. If the tray that the material is placed in is not made properly, then it can irritate the gums, but this is generally a temporary situation.
In-office whitening uses a stronger version of the same material. The gums should get a protective barrier before the whitening material is applied because it will cause a chemical burn if it sits on the gum tissue during the entire procedure. If this occurs, the gum tissue will appear white. This can be uncomfortable, but it will generally heal in about a day.
The best results will be attained by a combination of in-office whitening followed by take home whitening with a custom made tray. I tell my patients that 90% will get a really good result, 5% will get an unbelievable result, and 5% will get a slight result.
I have never seen a situation where teeth whitening using properly fitting trays caused any damage to the gums. Sometimes the trays are overextended, going beyond the teeth and onto the gums. This, improperly fitting bleaching trays, will much more likely cause problems with the gums than properly fitting trays. The over extended trays can cause mechanical irritation to the gum tissue, and it can also deliver bleaching gel directly onto the gums, causing some minor and temporary irritation. Before your dentist gives you the bleaching trays and bleaching get, he/she should check the fit of the bleaching trays to insure that you don't develop a problem during bleaching. The dentist should also give you instructions on how to remove any excess bleaching gel that may get onto your gums.
Custom bleaching trays should be properly made and patients should be properly trained as to how to use the whitening gel in order to avoid gum irritation. If the bleaching gel touches the gum tissue during the whitening treatment, this can cause temporary burning and irritation to the gums. However, this is not permanent and will go away after couple of days.
A well fitting tray and caution not to let bleaching gel touch the gums will prevent gum burning and irritation.
Your gums can be damaged with using whitening products in an incorrect manner. The best way to whiten your teeth is to have it done professionally. Over the counter products are not customized for each individual, sothere is a higher risk of problems.
A custom fit tray is a very important factor to prevent irritation of the gums from whitening gel. If gums are irritated during whitening, they will heal. Prevention is always best. Have your dentist check the fit of your trays before starting any whitening. A well fitting tray with a strong whitening gel, should take the average person about 7-10 days to see desired results. A 35% gel is worn for 30 minutes per day.
Using all things moderation! Over the counter products which are not PH neutral, whitening toothpaste (which is very abrasive) or bleaching trays for an excessive amount of time (more than 1-2 hours per day) can cause gingival irritation. Continued abuse can permanently damage gums. Zoom whitening, a two hour in office visit, is the shortest most effective treatment plan. Using take home trays to touch up occasionally is always helpful.