Bleaching your teeth is a safe procedure that can be carried out either at home or in your dentist's office to give your smile a bit of a boost. However, bleaching also becomes problematic if you do it too often.
Overbleaching is an increasingly serious issue, one which has led to the use of the term 'bleachorexia'. Many people repeatedly treat their teeth, obsessed with making them as white as possible. Here are just four reasons you need to stick to the timeframes suggested by your dentist.
1. Softening of Enamel
When conducted sensibly, the bleaching process will not damage your teeth, but the same cannot be said when you bleach more than is recommended. Your teeth aren't going to fall out from overuse, but the chemicals used can start to soften the enamel. Once the enamel is worn away, it cannot be replaced, which will mean that your teeth will be more likely to experience decay. Additionally, overbleaching can cause the gums to recede, which will make it easier for bacteria and plaque to reach the roots of your teeth and increase the likelihood of an infection occurring.
One of the visual side effects of overbleaching is that the teeth can develop a certain transparency. This is due to the loss of enamel, and you might find that you can actually see dark shadows where the teeth have become increasingly transparent, an effect which will be particularly clear around the edges of each tooth.
3. Excessive Sensitivity
Even when you bleach your teeth while following the explicit instructions of your dentist, sensitivity can still occur, leading many to avoid hot and cold drinks during the process. Unfortunately, sensitivity can become even worse if you bleach more often than you should. Instead of experiencing discomfort while drinking an icy beverage, you may find yourself experiencing discomfort simply while breathing cool air.
4. Unnatural Appearance
Repeatedly bleaching your teeth might make them a tiny bit whiter, but that doesn't mean they are going to look any better. People who overbleach often run the risk of making their teeth look unnaturally white instead of just clean and healthy, and it's difficult to perceive the difference when whiteness is all you care about. Most dentists recommend that you bleach your teeth to match the same shade of white as your eyes. Getting to this point should give you a knockout smile without making your teeth look unusually white.
For more information about bleaching your teeth safely, contact a cosmetic dentistry clinic in your area, such as Melrose Dental.