I recently had gum surgery to correct receding gums around my upper front teeth. I’m so happy with how my smile looks that I’m now considering whitening my teeth because they are yellow. How long do I have to wait after gum surgery to get my teeth bleached? Thanks. Elijah from UT
Thank you for your question. There are a few things to consider before you brighten your smile.
When Can You Whiten Your Teeth After Gum Surgery?
You can whiten your teeth after your gum tissue heals from surgery. Depending on your dentist’s surgical technique or the graft, you can expect between four to eight weeks for complete healing.
Do You Qualify for Zoom Whitening?
In-office Zoom whitening requires good oral health. Your dentist will examine your teeth to ensure that none of these conditions exist:
- Broken or missing fillings
- Tooth decay
- Active periodontal disease
- Remaining calculus clinging to the teeth
Also, gum surgeries must be fully healed. Your dentist will follow this procedure for in-office whitening:
- Isolate your teeth with a rubber dam
- Place a gingival barrier agent around each tooth to fully protect the gums
- Apply the whitening agent, hydrogen peroxide, to lighten the tooth shade while keeping it away from the gums to avoid chemical burns
- Use a blue LED light to activate the hydrogen peroxide and speed the process
You can expect the whitening appointment to take approximately an hour and a half.
Your decision to correct the recession before proceeding with whitening was wise. The active compound in the bleaching gel must not touch exposed root surfaces to prevent irritation and sensitivity. After your gums heal, you may ask your dentist for an exam to determine if your teeth and gums are ready for whitening.
Monroe, Louisiana accredited Fellow of cosmetic dentistry Dr. David Finley sponsors this post.