Blog Hero

Should I Get My Teeth Cleaned Before Whitening?

Book An Appointment
A male dentist is using a scaler in removing dental plaque. Cleaning the teeth before whitening.

Teeth whitening is a form of cosmetic dentistry performed to whiten someone’s natural tooth colour. Several methods can be used to achieve your desired smile, such as at-home kits, specialty toothpaste or mouthwashes, and professional whitening services at a dental clinic.

With that in mind, we recommend having your teeth professionally cleaned before undergoing teeth whitening services to help avoid discomfort or uneven whitening. 

At Marks Dentistry, our experienced dentists and friendly staff are happy to assist you in booking a teeth cleaning and whitening appointment. 

The Importance of Dental Cleaning Before Whitening 

We recommend having your teeth professionally cleaned before whitening, as it can provide numerous benefits that will positively affect the final results. 

Here are some of the benefits of having a cleaning before your whitening appointment: 

Plaque Removal 

Plaque can form in your mouth from food particles and salvia mixing; after some time, it will become tartar, which can build up on your gums and teeth. Whitening agents can sometimes be blocked by large tartar build-ups, causing an uneven whitening. Fortunately, a thorough dental cleaning will help to remove the built-up tartar on your teeth.

Detection of Cavities or Decay 

Your dentist will check your teeth for any signs of cavities or decay, which could affect the outcome of the whitening procedure. If you have a cavity, tooth decay, or gum disease, your dentist may wish to treat the issue before applying any whitening agents. 

Removal of Any Food Particles 

Similar to plaque removal, a professional dental cleaning will remove any residual food particles in your mouth—removing the food particles before the whitening can result in a brighter and more positive outcome. 

Why Might You Consider Teeth Whitening?

Tooth discolouration is not necessarily bad but can often result from natural causes. Therefore, some people choose to have teeth whitening performed to boost their self-esteem and feel confident in their smile. 

What Causes Tooth Discolouration?

Tooth discolouration can generally be classified as happening intrinsically or extrinsically. To explain, intrinsic discolouration happens from inside the tooth and is generally due to factors like aging, infection, or certain medications. 

Extrinsic discolouration is more comparative to staining and happens outside your teeth. The beverages you choose to drink or the foods you eat will often cause extrinsic discolouration.

That being said, there are several other common reasons why tooth yellowing might occur, and here are a few of them:

  • Genetics and aging 
  • Smoking and tobacco use 
  • Illnesses 

Teeth Whitening Side Effects 

Teeth whitening is not without some risk of side effects or discomfort, but having your teeth cleaned and the whitening performed by a professional can help to minimize the risks. 

Here are a few of the potential side effects of having your teeth whitened:

  • Tooth sensitivity 
  • Swelling in your gums 
  • irritation from contact with the whitening agents 
  • Undesirable results or little change in the colour of your teeth after the whitening  procedure
  • Symptoms can be more severe for people with gum diseases or recession

At Marks Dentistry, we always strive to make informed recommendations based on your needs and wants. Therefore, we encourage you to book a consultation with our friendly staff to discuss your options.

A woman is sitting on a dental chair and getting her teeth whiten at a dental clinic

Different Teeth Whitening Options

There are several teeth whitening options to choose from, and it is crucial to make an educated choice based on your desired results. 

Here are two of the standard options of teeth whitening methods:

Whitening Products 

Whitening products such as whitening strips, kinds of toothpastes, mouthwash, pens, or tray-based whiteners are popular consumerist items that can improve the brightness and colour of your teeth. However, in many cases, they are short-lasting and result in minor, if any, changes. 

Professional At-Home Whitening Kits

At Marks Dentistry we recommend a significant amount of take home whitening kits. These professional products are a great option if you are able to commit to the daily process for a couple of weeks. The kits are relatively easy to use and provide excellent results within one or two weeks, while being a more cost effective option than in-clinic whitening. 

Take home whitening kits do have a bit of a process including requiring a complete brushing, flossing, and rinsing before each treatment; and the procedure requires about an hour per day. Some brands can be worn overnight. Touch ups can be done with additional whitening solution if needed.

Whitening at the Clinic

Alternative to whitening products, you can opt to have your teeth professionally whitened at a dental clinic. In-house whitening treatments are more likely to produce positive results and leave your smile brighter.  

It’s important to have your teeth whitened at a clinic that tailors the experience to the individual. At Marks Dentistry, you can be confident that we will thoroughly examine and choose safe products for your teeth and body.

Tips to Retain Your Newly Whitened Teeth

After achieving your newly whitened smile, it’s important to take some precautions towards preserving it and keeping it bright and healthy for a long time. 

Here are a few tips for maintaining your smile after a teeth whitening session:

  • Brush and floss your teeth daily 
  • Avoid highly acidic foods like coffee or wine that can stain your teeth
  • Consume less sugar and maintain a healthy diet 
  • Schedule regular dental cleanings and checkups 

Come for a Visit!

At Marks Dentistry, we are always happy to discuss your teeth and the steps you can take toward achieving a whiter smile. We encourage you to book an appointment today and talk with our friendly staff!

Written by Marks Dentistry

More Articles By Marks Dentistry
instagram facebook facebook2 pinterest twitter google-plus google linkedin2 yelp youtube phone location calendar share2 link star-full star star-half chevron-right chevron-left chevron-down chevron-up envelope fax