Dear Valued Patient:

We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and stay safe.

Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.

You may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to help protect our patients and staff. For example:

- Our office will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions. You'll be asked those same questions again when you are in the office.

- We have hand sanitizer that we will ask you to use when you enter the office. You will also find some in the reception area and other places in the office for you to use as needed.

- You may see that our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, children's toys and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.

- Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you're offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.

- We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the reception area at any one time.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. To make an appointment, please call our office at 704-364-9000. 

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbors and friends.

Sincerely,

Dr. Porter and Team

Teeth Whitening Risks and Side Effects

Teeth whitening, especially when supervised by a dentist, is a safe and effective procedure with very few long-term risks. In most cases, side effects and other issues are caused by improper use of the whitening product or excessive whitening. Of the possible teeth whitening side effects, the most common is temporary dental sensitivity. You can minimize your risk by consulting with a dentist before beginning treatment and following instructions carefully. 
tooth sensitivity
Some patients experience sensitivity after teeth whitening.

Potential Long-Term Risks

There are very few risks associated with teeth whitening. However, in rare cases, both professional-grade and over-the-counter products can cause:

  • Permanent gum or tooth sensitivity
  • Damage to your dental roots
  • Enamel erosion
  • Uneven results
  • Damage to the mucous membranes in your mouth

Patients who continually whiten their teeth without the approval of their dentists can also develop serious oral health concerns. Constant use of peroxide-based whitening products can strip away tooth enamel and cause chemical burns on the soft tissue. However, these risks are rare and are typically associated with over-whitening or improper technique.

Undergoing professional whitening treatment with an experienced cosmetic dentist is the best way to minimize the chance of temporary or long-term side effects.

Temporary Side Effects

Although teeth whitening rarely causes long term damage, temporary sensitivity is not uncommon. If you experience any discomfort following your treatment, your dentist can help you minimize irritation in the future.

Dental Sensitivity

For most patients, sensitivity dissipates within a few days of treatment. While there is no way to predict who may develop the condition, some patients face a higher risk for post-whitening sensitivity. You are more likely to experience this side effect if you:

  • Already have sensitive teeth
  • Notice changes in the sensitivity of your teeth following a hygienic cleaning
  • Experience sensitivity following brushing, flossing, or fluoride treatments

Your dentist can recommend techniques to minimize sensitivity for future treatments. Gentle cleansing products and toothpastes can manage and decrease discomfort. Some dentists also offer desensitizing products for whitening patients. If you experience irritation, you should abstain from touch-up treatments until otherwise instructed by your dentist.

Gum Irritation

Another common side effect associated with teeth whitening is gum irritation. This condition may result from:

  • Using an ill-fitting bleaching tray
  • Failure of the protective barrier during in-office treatment
  • Overuse of a whitening agent

When designed correctly, at-home whitening trays prevent the bleaching gel from coming into contact with your gum tissue. Your dentist can create a custom-made tray to reduce the chance of irritation.

Minimizing Your Risks

Undergoing whitening treatment with an experienced cosmetic dentist is the best way to minimize the chance of temporary or long-term or side effects. Over-the-counter whitening products are less predictable. Some inexpensive products have dangerously high levels of peroxide. In addition, they are more likely to cause uneven results. Most side effects of teeth whitening stem from improper use of whitening gel, meaning you can protect your oral health by following all of your dentist’s instructions precisely. Consult your dentist before beginning whitening treatment to determine if you are a good candidate for teeth bleaching.

Dr. Porter

Charles A. Porter III, DDS

Dr. Porter implements the latest developments and highest standards in dentistry. He is a member of several prestigious organizations, including the:

  • American Dental Association
  • Academy of General Dentistry
  • North Carolina Dental Society 

To schedule your consultation, contact our Charlotte office online or call us at (704) 364-9000.

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Charlotte Office

135 S Sharon Amity Rd
Ste 200
Charlotte, NC 28211

Open Today 7:00am - 2:00pm

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