ZOOM or impending Gloom...

They all said it, the Dentist, Orthodontist, and Oral Surgeon. Go get "Zoomed" after your braces are off. I've since learned that not every one is familiar with the Zoom.  (Find a full description at the end of this post.)

This seemed like a logical step, right?  It is expensive, normal cost is around $400.00. I found a dentist offering a groupon for $150.00 So with great anticipation I booked my appointment. Everything seemed fine, My teeth were prepped and the light inserted to start round 1 of the 15 min. session. I should have clued in when i was given a bell to ring, if there was any "discomfort." The first "Zinger" hit me at aprox. 14.5 min. into the session. I almost jumped out of the chair, sending the lamp flying out of my mouth towards the window. With great vigor, I rang that bell. The dental assistant rushed over, and asked if I was in pain. I pointed to the tooth that had a shooting pain, and she applied some more goop of some kind. (I couldn't speak with a large plastic appliance in my mouth that was exposing my teeth.) She then hooked everything back up and started round two.  I think i went for 2 minutes, and then they came like machine gun fire in my mouth. Tooth after tooth had shooting nerve pain. I rang the bell, and removed the lamp. I asked the assistant to remove the appliance and get me out of this torture device. The dentist came to my chamber of despair to have a "chat." He said that I was the 8th person in 1000, who rang the bell in round one!  I told him that I consider myself to be a tough girl. I explained my double jaw surgery, and braces, and told him that this process felt medieval. I told him I was not a fan and asked to be excused as the air entering my mouth continued sending zingers to my brain. I was full of regret, and the assistant tried to reassure me, she said that my teeth did look whiter so it was not a total loss, and then proceeded to try and sell me on bleach trays! SERIOUSLY.. Im going out of my mind with zinging nerve pain, the last thing i would ever consider at this point is more of the same. I said "no thanks" Ill use crest white strips if i ever need touch up. She continued to push me to BUY bleach trays, but I politely asked to be shown the way to the front door. 

The zingers continued all day. If I kept my mouth shut, it helped. By early that evening, the nerve pain subsided, and then the infamous ache snuck in from behind to replace the random shooting pains. The rest of the night, My teeth hurt so bad.  I have never had that kind of aching pain before.  The good news, when I woke up the next morning, I felt normal again. I have not had any pain or sensitivity since. WHEW!!! 

In fairness, I feel like I need to mention again, that I fall into a small percentage of people who have this severe reaction. If you are a person that can sit through all three sessions pain free, I say go for it! The results are fantastic if your teeth are not wimpy and sensitive like mine.  My recommendation would be to try the bleach trays. If they have no effect on your teeth, you may survive Zoom. If your teeth are at all sensitive, I suggest avoiding it all together. 

I think my teeth look a little bit whiter, but they were never discolored to begin with. This was not worth it for me, not a procedure I would ever do again. But I am in that "odd group." 

"Zoom is a bleaching process widely used throughout the country and around the world to lighten discoloration of enamel and dentin. Tooth discoloration may result from drinking coffee, tea, cola and red wine; or from smoking. The aging process also can stain and darken your teeth.The Zoom in-office tooth whitening procedure uses the Zoom Advanced Power Chairside Lamp – said to accelerate the bleaching process – to activate the 25 percent hydrogen peroxide whitening. As the hydrogen peroxide is broken down, oxygen enters the enamel and dentin to bleach the stained substances, leaving the structure of the tooth unchanged. the procedure begins with a short preparation to cover the lips and gums, leaving the teeth exposed. The dentist or dental assistant then applies the Zoom hydrogen peroxide whitening gel, which works together with the Zoom light to penetrate the teeth and break up the stains and discoloration.The gel remains in place for 15 minutes while the light is activated. During this time, you can relax, watch TV or listen to music.The gel is applied for three 15-minute sessions of light activation, for a total treatment time of 45 minutes. Individuals with a strong gag reflex or anxiety may have difficulty undergoing the entire procedure."