Concerned About Teeth Whitening? Here's the Scoop
You'll be glad to hear that the answer is yes, tooth whitening is perfectly safe!
None of the commercially available whiteners on the market now contain ingredients that would hurt the teeth, the enamel, gums or dental nerves. As long as you use them according to the directions for each product, your teeth will remain healthy and strong.
Another question I've been asked is whether or not teeth whiteners have any effect on existing dental work Once again you'll be relieved to find out that your existing dental work is safe. Teeth whiteners will not cause any harm to crowns, fillings or bridge work.
If you do have bridges, crowns or veneers, you should know that the whitening agents in commercial products will not adjust the color of them. They're specifically formulated to whiten tooth enamel – not porcelain or any other dental veneer product. If your existing dental work is yellowing, you should consult a cosmetic dentist for remedies.
Teeth Whitening Strips or Teeth Whitening Trays?
People have had great teeth whitening success with both the strips and the trays, so it really boils down to a personal choice between the two. Here are some details about each method so you can make an informed choice.
Both strips and trays each contain peroxide. The strips go directly onto your teeth and you can wear the out in public without anyone knowing your secret. The trays, on the other hand, are a bit messier and you won't want to wear them out of the house. You place the gel in the tray and then hold that in your mouth for an extended period of time. So if you have time you can set aside where you won't have to talk on the phone or to your family, they might be an option.
Both methods will require repeated use to get the best results. Most products recommend a treatment at least 3 times a year. Even with the multiple treatments, the at home kits are much less expensive than the price your dentist would charge.
How to Keep Your Teeth White in Between Treatments
In order to keep your smile looking its best in between your teeth whitening treatments, make sure you're brushing your teeth frequently. Keep an extra toothbrush and paste kit in your purse so you can attend to your teeth after each meal and when you're away from home. Avoid coffee and tea, which have both been known to stain teeth. Using toothpaste with whitening ingredients is also a big part of your maintenance program.
Many whitening kits come with color strips so you can measure their effectiveness. You can also use these strips during your maintenance phase to decide when to do your next full treatment. Don't wait until you notice your teeth have stained or are yellowing. Be proactive and you'll have the best chance of keeping your smile sparkly white!
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