Common Teeth Whitening Procedures
Everyone dreams of having white teeth – the kind of teeth that brightens a smile! In this generation we live in, that is not a hard feat at all. Modern technology and innovations in dentistry has allowed us easy and accessible ways to wow the world with a bright, white smile. There are many tooth whitening products and/or procedures that are available for anyone who wish to achieve whiter teeth. These products vary in prices, making them budget-friendly to those who want to make their teeth look better but do not have much money to spend for it. Of course, the effectiveness of the product or procedure may vary with the cost, but it doesn’t mean that cheaper ones are not effective at all. With all these tooth-whitening options available, however, regular tooth brushing and flossing still remains to be the top means of achieving healthy and clean teeth.
Here are several tooth whitening methods.
Chewing gums. These are not your regular chewing gums for they are especially made to whiten teeth. These gums contain bicarb soda, a common ingredient in tooth-whitening tooth pastes. Whitening gums, however, do not contain any bleaching agents, which is a usual substance found in most effective tooth whitening systems. All you have to do is chew a gum four times a day for 20 minutes. It often takes about four weeks before any sign of effect appears.
Toothpaste. These whitening products are easy to access. They can be bought over-the-counter. They look like regular tooth pastes and used like regular tooth pastes but they are slightly more expensive due to their claims teeth-whitening effects. Dentists, however, argue that these tooth-whitening pastes are only as good as regular tooth pastes and do not have any teeth whitening capabilities. Frequent brushing (more than twice a day) may do more harm than good to a person’s teeth.
Teeth whitening strips. These whitening products are also sold over the counter like whitening pastes. They contain a low concentration of peroxide, about 6 to 15%, which is a bleaching agent. The strips are worn in the mouth for an hour, once or twice a day, within a certain number of days. Teeth whitening strips come in different brands which may vary in results. Regular use of whitening strips can make the teeth look three times brighter than before. Many people opt to use these strips to whiten their teeth because it is a good and budget-friendly option. It is also a comfort to wear, with only slight discomfort when it is worn while talking.
Teeth whitening trays. These trays are worn in the mouth together with a whitening gel several times a day, for a specific amount of time. The gel contains 10 to 15% concentration of the bleaching agent, carbamide peroxide. It is available in one-size-fits-all or custom sizes. This method is quite effective in whitening the teeth, but it is observed that the one-size-fits-all trays are less successful in delivering desired results due to improper tooth-gel contact.
In office tooth whitening. This method of teeth whitening is also called laser teeth whitening. It is the most sought after and most effective of them all. It is a procedure performed by a dental professional that promises almost immediate effects. The procedure involves cleaning the mouth before applying a protective gel in it. Another special gel that contains peroxide is applied to teeth. To activate the bleaching gel, a special kind of light is used. The gel, activated by the light, penetrates the tooth enamel and beaches it in order to turn the teeth white. This procedure may have side effects, but they go away few days after the procedure has been performed.