You’re about to get braces to achieve a perfect smile. But crooked teeth aren’t your only problem. Your smile is also a bit dull.

Discolored teeth are part of life. Your teeth change color as you age and due to lifestyle factors, like consuming food and drink that stain your teeth. But should you whiten your teeth before your braces? Or stick to teeth whitening after braces?

Should You Whiten Your Teeth Before Braces?

Here are some basic rules for teeth whitening before and after braces.

Dentist checking bracket at the braces on the female patient. Close-up. Real People.

There’s no rule saying you can’t whiten your teeth in the weeks and months before getting fitted for braces. However, it would be best to discuss your decision with your orthodontist.

Your orthodontist may raise two issues that are important to think about. First, teeth whitening can increase tooth sensitivity. You may find that a new whitening treatment makes your teeth more sensitive, even if you’re wearing Invisalign or another removable aligner system.

A second concern is the evenness of the treatment. If your teeth are particularly crowded, twisted, or crooked, a teeth whitening treatment may not apply evenly. As a result, you will get better results if you wait until you get your braces off. Waiting will save you money as well as prevent a patchy look.

Can You Whiten Your Teeth While Wearing Braces?

Whitening your teeth while your braces are on isn’t a good idea.

If you have metal braces, the effects will be patchy as you won’t whiten the area under the brackets.

If you’re using Invisalign, you need to remove the aligners for the treatment time. It would be best to take out your aligners when you need to eat or brush your teeth.

Additionally, whitening products can interfere with the adhesion of attachments used by the aligners to help move your teeth. You could wind up scheduling a new trip to the dentist and seeing your treatment costs grow.

Instead, focus on dental hygiene, including brushing, flossing, and mouthwash. The right products can prevent further staining or even reduce the appearance of existing discoloration.

Teeth Whitening After Braces Makes the Most Sense

As tempting as it might be to try to get a jump start on a whiter smile, choosing teeth whitening after braces tend to be the best route to follow.

You won’t have to worry about interactions between the whitening treatment and your braces, increased sensitivity, or even application.

Often, your orthodontist office will even offer teeth whitening services, so you can get your teeth whitened at a place familiar with your history. The team at offers this service.

If you can’t wait, talk to your orthodontist about the best route.

Get a Brighter, Whiter Smile After Braces

Before getting braces, you already dream of the day when they come off and you reveal your new smile. While it’s tempting to want everything to be perfect, whitening treatments are often lost on patients just about to get braces.

The best route to follow is choosing teeth whitening after braces. It’s a great way to perfect your new smile rather than try to improve your old one.

Do you have kids about to get braces? Visit the parenting archive for more great tips. Once you’re ready to get your teeth whitened after finally taking your braces off, you can check out this dentist who does teeth whitening, implants, and dental bridges in Saratoga Springs.

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