Teeth whitening treatment is one of the most common cosmetic dentistry procedures. Staining of teeth is very common, and whitening is a simple way to restore your teeth to their original color. However, if you are pregnant or nursing, you may want to think twice before pursuing teeth whitening.
Teeth whitening is an extremely safe procedure. It uses a bleaching agent to remove stains and external discoloration. The cosmetic dentist who performs the procedure uses a special gel to protect your gums and other soft oral tissues while the whitening agent is painted on the tooth surfaces. Under normal conditions, the possible side effects of teeth whitening include irritation to the gums, lips or tongue and increased tooth sensitivity, which is usually temporary.
If you are pregnant or nursing, though, there is a slight possibility that the teeth whitening gel could affect your growing baby. There is no evidence that it can harm your baby, but there has not been enough testing done to be sure whitening is safe for your baby, either. Scientists also haven’t determined if the chemicals in the whitening agent can be passed on through breast milk. If you do wish to have your teeth whitened, you should consult with your obstetrician or pediatrician. However, to be on the safe side it is probably best to wait until after your baby is born or you have finished nursing.
Although teeth whitening should be avoided during this time, there are many things you can do to keep your teeth healthy during your pregnancy. Pregnancy hormones make you more vulnerable to decay and gum disease, so be sure to maintain proper dental care, including brushing, flossing, and regular visits to the dentist. If you have any major dental concerns such as decay or necessary oral surgery, it is best to have these problems tended to before you become pregnant.
For more information about teeth whitening or other concerns about dental care during pregnancy, call our dedicated team of dentists at Newton Dental Group in Surrey to schedule an appointment.