Teeth whitening is a popular activity these days. Whitening your teeth is one easy way to get a brighter smile. Teeth whitening uses either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide to bleach the tooth. This bleach breaks up the stains that are on the tooth, giving it a brighter appearance.
Although people want whiter teeth, most aren’t sure how to go about it. There seem to be a lot of choices. But those choices break down into three ways to whiten your teeth:
- Whitening toothpastes are a very popular whitening option that removes surface stains from the teeth through the use of abrasive ingredients. Toothpastes with the ADA Seal are safe options for whitening your teeth, but these only remove surface stains. Toothpastes that contain bleach can change the color of your teeth, but may not be the best option for you if you have sensitive teeth. In general, toothpastes will only lighten your teeth a little bit. If you’re seeking more serious results, try one of the other two options.
- In-office bleaching, sometimes referred to as chairside bleaching, is when the dentist applies a gel or rubber shield to protect your gums and then applies bleach to the teeth. Klooster Family Dentistry offers a teeth whitening kit that works on intrinsic discoloration, which is when the discoloration is on the inner structure of your teeth rather than the surface. We will create a tray that is custom-fitted to your teeth; the results from this whitening process can last for years!
- At-home bleaching kits typically use peroxide whitening gel to bleach the teeth. This may be in the form of a tray that you wear on your teeth, whitening strips, or a whitening pen. At-home bleaching is not usually as successful as in-office bleaching because the concentration of bleach is lower than what your dentist uses.
Does Teeth Whitening Work?
So, does teeth whitening actually work? Yes and no; results will vary according to if the stains on your teeth are extrinsic or intrinsic and the natural color tendencies of your teeth. Unless you have naturally white teeth, using only whitening toothpaste will not drastically change the color of your teeth. Luckily, professional teeth whitening options tend to give great results, even for intrinsic discoloration. At-home bleaching also may change the color of your teeth, but the results may not last as long. It’s important to note that overuse of at-home bleaching products may also damage your gums or enamel.
If you would like to learn more about teeth whitening options or to schedule an appointment, contact us at Klooster Family Dentistry.