Many people would do anything to have a brighter smile. Some even go to the extent of using several teeth whitening products at once in order to keep their teeth white. Bleaching your teeth without consulting a dentist can expose you to side effects that can compromise your dental well-being. This article discusses some of the risks you face if you use teeth bleaching compounds without consulting a dentist or healthcare professional.

Oral Irritation

One of the biggest risks of self-prescribed teeth whitening is the likelihood of suffering from oral irritation. The bleach can irritate your gums, throat and palate. That irritation may be a result of using the wrong concentration of bleach, or using a given bleach for much longer than is appropriate. The result is that the bleach will wear down your oral organs like the gums and you will start feeling the irritation in your mouth. That is why it is important to seek for your dentist's advice regarding which bleach to use and how much.

Enamel Erosion

Your teeth have a very hard outer coating called enamel. However, this coating isn't indestructible. Teeth bleaching compounds can eventually erode this enamel. This is because the whitening compound in the bleach works by reacting with the substances (like discoloration caused by chemicals in tobacco) on the surface of teeth.

When you use the bleach in a way that is different from the way it was designed (exceeding the recommended duration, for example), your enamel will start to erode. This will expose the delicate structures in the teeth such as the nerves to external conditions (such as hot food). Those delicate structures can be damaged by that exposure and you may develop long-term dental problems like cavities.

Teeth Hypersensitivity

Use of teeth bleaches can expose hypersensitive teeth. You can become more sensitive to cold or hot things. You may also experience spontaneous pain in your teeth even when there is nothing in your mouth. A dentist can evaluate you and decide if teeth bleaches are ideal for you. He or she can prescribe certain medications or toothpastes in case you are prone to hypersensitivity. In the absence of the dentist's involvement, you lose that preemptive care, thereby increasing your chances of developing hypersensitive teeth.

You should never take the decision to use dental bleach lightly. Consult your general dentist and let him or her advise you on the best way to whiten your teeth.