Posted by Dr. William Yoo
Teeth whitening is considered a cosmetic procedure, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have benefits to your overall oral health and well-being. If you are ashamed of your smile because your teeth are yellow or discoloured, teeth whitening can work wonders for your self-esteem. But is it safe to whiten your teeth during pregnancy?
Dental services during pregnancy: Bleaching vs. whitening
If you are in good health, you can receive dental services for the majority of your pregnancy (usually up until the third trimester). Teeth whitening, if done by a dental professional, will not harm your baby. According to the Canadian Dental Association, whitening is fine but bleaching is not. Bleaching your teeth uses harsher chemicals, and those may prove harmful to your baby. Whitening uses a different set of chemicals that are less abrasive. Furthermore, the CDA says that bleaching products have not been tested on women who are pregnant (as of their 2013 position). So, if you are looking to have your teeth bleached, you will have to wait until after you have given birth and after your baby has finished breastfeeding.
Consult your dentist
Before having any dental services done, you should meet with your dentist. Teeth whitening is no exception. Your dentist will assess your situation and determine whether or not you can undergo whitening treatments while you are expecting. As aforementioned, most dental procedures are fine up until the third trimester, but consulting your dentist is always a good idea whether you are pregnant or not. Once you give birth, you’ll be able to resume regular dental services such as cleanings and checkups.
Over-the-counter products are a no-no
If your dentist feels that teeth whitening may not be able to be performed while you are pregnant, listen to them. Do not use over-the-counter whitening products. These products, although they can provide a temporary whitening solution, are a waste of money and can be harmful to you. Over-the-counter whitening kits can cause your teeth’s enamel to thin and your gums to recede and can even burn the soft tissue of your gums. Additionally, the trays or strips used in over-the-counter whiteners may be ill-fitting and create uneven colouration on your teeth.
For any dental services you are hoping to undergo, we can help. You can have a beautiful pregnant glow with a beautiful smile to match. Contact us to set up an appointment.