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Professional teeth whitening is the process of lightening the colour of teeth and removing any staining for a white, even and bright smile.

In this article we’ll talk about exactly how teeth whitening works and answer some of the common questions we get from our patients .

How does teeth whitening work?

At Oakwood Dental Practice we use carbamide peroxide based gels. They work by breaking down the large molecules in the dentine that are causing the staining and discolouration. Breaking down and removing these molecules whitens and brightens the overall appearance of the teeth.

Is teeth whitening safe?

Professional teeth whitening under the guidance of a dentist is perfectly safe. At your initial consultation your dentist will make sure that the treatment is suitable for you and advise you of the results that you can expect. In terms of the impact on your teeth from a bleaching treatment, the effect has been shown to be the equivalent to drinking a fizzy drink.1

Will teeth whitening give me sensitivity?

Professional teeth whitening can cause sensitivity as the gel gets to work in breaking down the stains. At Oakwood Dental Practice we use professional gels containing NOVON® technology which helps to boost results over a shorter treatment time, with an active sensitivity management formula so any sensitivity is kept to a minimum. There are also options for a milder treatment for those who suffer with sensitivity generally.

Any sensitivity that occurs will subside 24-48 hours after the gel has been used, and is easily managed by applying sensitive toothpaste directly to the tooth. We also recommend using sensitive toothpaste for two weeks leading up to your treatment to minimise the sensitivity that you experience.

Will my teeth whitening be patchy?

When you have teeth whitening with us at Oakwood Dental Practice you have a custom-fit tray that’s created from a digital scan of your teeth and gums. The snug fit of the tray ensures that the whitening gel is applied evenly to the teeth throughout the treatment, which in turn creates an even lift of the tooth shade.

Professional vs. off the shelf whitening solutions – what’s better?

The results that you’ll achieve with professional teeth whitening are likely to be quicker, longer-lasting and greater than solutions that you can buy off the shelf. It’s worth bearing in mind that some at-home whitening treatments or DIY whitening treatments whiten the teeth through abrasion, scrubbing the staining away. This can lead to enamel damage, so it’s best to seek advice from your dentist on the different approaches to teeth whitening that may be suitable for you.

Can I drink coffee after teeth whitening?

If you wouldn’t drink it sitting on a white sofa, it’s best avoided during teeth whitening treatments. We’d advise steering clear of any of the following drinks during your treatment period or for the following 14 days, as it can diminish your results and affect how even your results are:

  • Coffee
  • Red wine
  • Fizzy drinks
  • Dark coloured juices
  • Rich coloured foods such as turmeric or tomatoes.

Book your consultation

You can find out more about what you get as part of your teeth whitening package here!



McCracken MS,et al.Demineralisation effects of 10% CP. & cola on enamel. J Dent Res 1993;72:215)