Teenager Wants His Teeth Whitened?

Hi, My 16 y/o son just got the braces off and wants to have his teeth whitened. I think it’s the teenage thing because his teeth look white enough to me, with no stains. I am hesitant for him to do the Zoom light or any other heavy duty strong chemical trays. He is still a kid and I don’t want him to have any long term side effects, like loosing the enamel etc. Any advice will be greately appreciated? Thank you!

Doctor Answers 7

Is Zoom Whitening Safe For Teenagers?

Teeth whitening is proven to be a safe procedure even for teenagers.  It must be said that the younger that you are the more sensitivity that you will have for 24 hours following the procedure.  The patient will get better results by using the bleaching trays given for a couple of days following the Zoom procedure.  Good luck. 

Houston Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Teeth whitening for a teenager

Your son`s desire to whiten his teeth is quite explainable. Part of that image is the age. My son is 18 and I would like him to use safe home bleaching gel to freshen his teeth, but he`s just to lazy to follow the instructions. I would recommend to you home bleaching with low % of the active ingredients in the gel. I`m not a Zoom supporter, it gives significant sensitivity, short term results, in comparison to home bleaching.

Teeth whitening is safe at any age

There is no such thing as "necessity" when it comes to whitening, it is all a matter of preference.  "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," and all that....


There really is no way to damage teeth at any age via whitening.  Normally, the younger the patient, the greater the sensitivity (100% temporary and reversible), so most kids quit trying pretty quickly.  My daughters started with the strips at age 12, but gave up within a few days due to the laziness of their age.  One zoomed after her braces came off at age 14.


The real decision is if it is worth the cost, but there is no risk of damage.

Lance Timmerman, DMD, MAGD
Seattle Dentist
4.3 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Teenager and Teeth Whitening

An excellent way for him to be introduced to the whitening process is with the over the counter purchase of a home bleaching product such as Crest White Strips. That should be strong enough for him at such a young age.

Jay Neuhaus, DDS
New York Dentist

My 16 yr old want whitening?

First if used correctly we don't see any negative side effects... You may want to find out what your son is really looking to do? Is it friends saying his teeth are not attractive, it is others who are having it done and he thinks their teeth look better. Is it a girlfriend? You may want to start with an OTC for a short time and see the result and go from their. In most cases people don't continue to whiten their teeth after 6-12 months. Make sure your son understands it is not permanent and will need to be done over and over again to maintain result. Good luck and let him know he looks great either way.


Kevin Coughlin DMD, MBA, MAGD    CEO Baystate Dental PC

Kevin Coughlin, DMD
Springfield Dentist

Whitening for teenager

I agree with you, that at 16 years of age there should not be a necesity yet to whiten his teeth. So you can suggest: 1. to go for his annual cleaning at the dental office and if there is any plaque darkening his teeth it will be removed by a dental hygienist, 2. to buy over the counter whitening tooth paste. Those would be 2 most simple solutions that he might be happy with.

Zina Kaleinikova, DDS, MS
Cleveland Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Safe Whitening Options for Teenagers

Hello, and thanks for your question!  There are many at-home whitening options available which are safe for teenagers--many offices make customized whitening trays which patients use at home with varying strengths of whitening bleach.  Although that is a great investment and the trays can be used repeatedly, many parents opt for disposable trays that can be used at home.  They are still professional strength (and are typically only available through dental professionals), but often one or two packages of these trays can help the patient acheive their ideal shade.  And, they're ideal for busy teens as the wear time is minimal (approx 30 mins), they don't have to worry about dispensing bleach, they're disposable, and patients typically experience little sensitivity with these.  Good luck!

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.