On the Teeth Whitening from Hell…

Did you know teeth whitening is expensive? My word! A dentist told me it could be anywhere between three and five grand for one (!).

It was going to be very difficult to do it the professional way, so I had to go with the at-home route. I must tell I am a bit skeptical when it comes to this kind of things, so I didn’t trust whitening cream, or mouth wash, or strips, but I remembered Mrs. Snapdragon’s review of Rembrandt’s 2-hour whitening kit and the great results she got. So I ordered two from the States (since it’s not sold in Mexico).

Image via Amazon

Last Thursday Mr. Toadstool tried his package, and other than leaving him with extremely sensitive gums, it didn’t do a thing for him.

Saturday was my turn; the kit has four ampules with the whitening gel that you put on for 20 minutes each, resting 20 minutes between applications. It started OK, but by the time I put the second one on, things were going badly; it was not the burning gums or the dried lips, but the excruciating pain in my bottom teeth.

Image via Beauty Logic

I felt like my teeth were being pulled in the most savage way possible, one by one. I removed the gel, but the pain kept going for a few minutes and came back every time air touched my teeth. So I spent the rest of the day with my mouth closed while applying Chap Stick to my overly dried lips. It was a disaster.

Image via Tooth Guru

So I ended up with pain in my teeth, tender gums, dried lips, and a half-unused whitening kit, ’cause you can bet I didn’t kept going.

Big fail.

Did you whiten your teeth prior to your wedding or pictures? Did you try an at-home kit?

BLOGGER

Mrs. Toadstool

Location:
Obregon, Mexico
Wedding Date:
December 2012

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  1. Member
    texasaggiemom 595 posts, Busy bee @ 2:36 pm

    I’ve had excellent results with Crest Professional Effects whitening strips. My daughter and I both use them regularly without any of the ill effects you describe. That must have been awful!

  2. Member
    camel 703 posts, Busy bee @ 2:48 pm

    Ouch! This sounds terrible! I’m not sure if you want to try again, but I second the previous poster in using Crest strips. My teeth were slightly sensitive after using them twice a day for over a week, but nothing like what you described in this post! Nothing is worth that kind of torture!

  3. Member
    haleybooms 41 posts, Newbee @ 3:12 pm

    I use hydrogen peroxide to whiten my teeth. Just swish some around in your mouth once or twice a day, and the longer you hold it in the whiter your teeth get. Be warned it doesn’t taste great and don’t try to take too much at once. It will foam!!

  4. Member
    veggie_rachel 575 posts, Busy bee @ 3:12 pm

    That’s the worst! I’m sorry! If you do try again I recommend using a fluoride rinse before. I haven’t tried it, but my sister did and she said it helped a lot. Good luck!

  5. Member
    PlumeriaSplash 243 posts, Helper bee @ 3:35 pm

    Whitening is the exact opposite of what is good for your teeth. It strips the enamel from your teeth (the stuff that protects it from cavities). The stripped enamel is what’s making your teeth feel sensitive to temperature. Whitening toothpaste does the same thing. Short term maybe it works but long term these chemicals cause more cavities and discoloration.

    Better solutions!!!

    Tooth paste or mouthwashes with fluoride help build that enamel back. In the mean time, drink cold/hot liquids with a straw to avoid them coming in contact with your teeth and hurting. I recommend a toothpaste called Sensodyne (with Floride) which is designed for sensitive teeth. You’ll feel better after a week of this.

  6. Member
    Marry Jane 368 posts, Helper bee @ 3:47 pm

    I have had good results with using Crest White strips… I think all 3 varieties I tried (normal, professional, and sensitive teeth) all worked about equally as well. I also found out that adding baking soda on top of my toothpaste every week or so helps keep them white when you don’t want to do the whitening because that is the active ingredient in whitening toothpastes. It also gives you that “just got done at the dentist” clean mouth feeling and mixing it with toothpaste totally covers up the weird baking soda taste.

  7. Member
    bluewhale 638 posts, Busy bee @ 4:50 pm

    I think the slower and more gradually you do the whitening, the less painful it will be. So while it may take a month or two to get the results you want with strips, at least you can eat food without crying. Sorry you were in such pain! I had a moment of intense sensitivity once with whitening so I know how horrible it can be!

  8. Member
    Soon2BeMrs7913 545 posts, Busy bee @ 5:53 pm

    I would recommend just going to the dentist.. There are decent deals out there for 2-500 dollars.. the whitening strips literally just take off layers from your teeth where as the whitening process at the dentist office uses a light to whiten what you already have.. no layers coming off… oh wait someone already posted this ha my bad.. sorry for the repeat..

  9. Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 7:35 pm

    Girl, I did this teeth whitening kit the nit before our wedding, procrastinate much? It hurt, but luckily, my happiness the next day completely negated my pain.

  10. Guest Icon Guest
    Ally, Guest @ 8:10 pm

    I agree that you can just use hydrogen peroxide successfully. It’s much cheaper and safer. Just swish some around for thirty seconds morning and night every day. You’ll gradually see results in a couple weeks. Great for fighting germs too!

  11. Guest Icon Guest
    reyna, Guest @ 4:15 am

    I am a dental hygienist and I agree with what some of the other Bees have said. Using hydrogen peroxide to rinse with (for no longer than a minute at a time) on a daily basis, as well as over the counter whitening or baking soda toothpastes, is a safe and effective way to remove day-to-day staining, helping to keep your smile bright. Whitening too quickly can cause major tooth sensitivity and gum irritation. To help prevent tooth sensitivity, try using Sensodyne as your only toothpaste for two weeks prior to and during any over the counter or professional whitening program. One of the best ways to whiten your teeth is to call your dentist and see if they can make custom whitening trays for you to use at home with a professional whitening material. Some offices may offer free custom whitening if you become a new patient or refer a friend- it doesn’t hurt to call and ask! Never dive right into a long whitening session- always start out slow. If the manufacturer recommends 30 minutes of whitening time, sometimes I only start with 15. The same can be said for in-office “1-hour” or “zoom!” whitening- it may be too harsh for potentially senitive teeth. It might seem like common sense, but try to avoid dark colored food and drinks, or drink with a straw when possible to help avoid further staining the teeth. Brushing and flossing after meals, or chewing Trident White when you can’t brush, will help keep your smile bright and healthy. Happy smiles ladies! :)

  12. Member
    reynaweddingbee 194 posts, Blushing bee @ 4:18 am

    I am a dental hygienist and I agree with what some of the other Bees have said. Using hydrogen peroxide to rinse with (for no longer than a minute at a time) on a daily basis, as well as over the counter whitening or baking soda toothpastes, is a safe and effective way to remove day-to-day staining, helping to keep your smile bright. Whitening too quickly can cause major tooth sensitivity and gum irritation. To help prevent tooth sensitivity, try using Sensodyne as your only toothpaste for two weeks prior to and during any over the counter or professional whitening program. One of the best ways to whiten your teeth is to call your dentist and see if they can make custom whitening trays for you to use at home with a professional whitening material. Some offices may offer free custom whitening if you become a new patient or refer a friend- it doesn’t hurt to call and ask! Never dive right into a long whitening session- always start out slow. If the manufacturer recommends 30 minutes of whitening time, sometimes I only start with 15. The same can be said for in-office “1-hour” or “zoom!” whitening- it may be too harsh for potentially senitive teeth. It might seem like common sense, but try to avoid dark colored food and drinks, or drink with a straw when possible to help avoid further staining the teeth. Brushing and flossing after meals, or chewing Trident White when you can’t brush, will help keep your smile bright and healthy. Happy smiles ladies! :)

  13. Member
    stephanieelise 228 posts, Helper bee @ 6:59 am

    @reynaweddingbee: thanks for the great advice!!!

    And I totally agree with peroxide working well for me!

  14. Member
    msarmadillo 497 posts, Helper bee @ 2:18 pm

    Yikes! I tried a generic version of the Crest Whitestrips and it totally made my teeth super sensitive to air for a few hours (after one use!) I threw those suckers away. I used the actual Crest Whitestrips back in high school and they didn’t cause any sensitivity so I’ll probably just crack and fork out the extra bucks to buy the real thing come closer to our wedding day. The things we do for beauty!!!

  15. Member
    bracelet 1419 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:19 pm

    Years ago I had one whitening session done by my dentist, which went well. My teeth hurt throughout the rest of the day, but an aspirin helped with that.

  16. Member
    toothfairy5739 22 posts, Newbee @ 9:40 pm

    I am a dental hygienist, hints the name, haha, anyway. First, whitening does not harm the teeth. What make the teeth sensitive during bleaching is the opening of the dentinal tubules (think pores) in our teeth that extend from the enamel to the nerve, causing the fluid within those tubes to move more freely which thus induced sensitivity. This is only temporary and does not cause long term damage to the tooth structure. In fact whitening agents were first discovered when dentist began prescribing this peroxide mouth rinse to patients with gum disease, as a side effect to their gum treatment their patients teeth got whiter. As Reyna stated using a sensitivity toothpaste while bleaching will help combat some of the sensitivity. I always warn my patients of sensitivity whether using OTC strips, which we recommend, or custom trays from our office. Any type of bleaching has the potential to cause some sensitivity but some OTC product can make your teeth more sensitive than the bleach sold by dental offices just because of FDA rules on the ingredients allowed to be sold OTC as oppose to by a health care provider. No matter what type of whitening you use a good rule of thumb is if you have the ability, prior to whitening, to bite straight into the Popsicle without any cringing then whitening shouldn’t give you much of an issue. If you are like the the majority of us, myself included, who cant do that then you will probably have sensitivity…. As far as some helpful hints. If you experience sensitivity to your gums as oppose to your teeth most likely you are putting either too much gel in the trays or the gel is too far down on the trays, you only want to use a small amount of gel in the upper 3rd of the tray, you do not want any gel to squish out of the tray. When starting whitening, don’t leave the trays on for the entire time recommended on the first day (usually 1/2 the time). If you do fine with that then the next day bleach for the entire recommended time. If you do experience sensitivity then it is ok to skip days in between. By the end of the box you will have the same results, it just might take a little longer. As an additional measure if you are having sensitivity I always recommend for my patients to brush and floss normally then put a pea size amount of sensitivity or high fluoride toothpaste on you finger and rub it on your teeth, spit out what you need to but DO NOT RINSE (think Fluoride treatment in office, no eating or drinking for 30 minutes after). This allows a higher concentration of the anti sensitivity agents to help occlude the dentinal tubules, thus decreasing sensitivity. Everyone is different and will experience different things. I have some patients that have never had even the slightest sensitivity and others who have sworn off whitening. My biggest recommendation is to always discuss the issue with your dental provider. Never be afraid to ask their opinion or which products they do or don’t recommend. They can also prescribe a better sensitivity toothpaste than what is available over the counter either Fluoride based, potassium nitrate based or calcium phosphate based if the OTC stuff isn’t helping.

  17. Guest Icon Guest
    Ms. Kit, Guest @ 2:39 am

    I had the same experience with a different brand. Right now we use a mouthwash made with mainly hydrogen peroxide that tastes fine and doesn’t hurt, though I haven’t noticed significant whitening yet. It’s a Crest brand fancy-pants thing, but it means I can second the chain of Bees suggesting hydrogen peroxide swishing.

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