Teeth whitening: Pros, cons and how to do it safely

Use teeth whitening products as directed.

Use teeth whitening products as directed.

What you need to know:

  • The best way to whiten your teeth sustainably is to keep up with your oral hygiene routine.
  • If you plan to have teeth whitening done at your dentist's office, make sure you choose a qualified and experienced dentist who has been trained in teeth whitening procedures.
  • Tooth sensitivity is a common teeth whitening side effect. It is usually temporary, but it can be quite uncomfortable.

Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures, and for good reason. New techniques can make teeth look up to ten shades lighter in a few short hours. However, teeth whitening isn't without its risks. Therefore, before you start the process of whitening your teeth, get to know the pros and cons of the procedure, as well as tips for doing it safely and effectively.

Commercial teeth whitening techniques

The most popular option is using teeth whitening kits that use peroxide-based bleaching gels to lighten teeth. These kits can be bought at most drugstores or online, and they usually come with a tray that fits over your teeth and a gel that you apply to the tray.

Alternatively, you can try laser teeth whitening. This technique uses lasers to activate the bleaching gel and speed up the process of lightening teeth. Laser teeth whitening can be done at your dentist's office or at home.

You can also opt for teeth whitening strips. These thin plastic strips are coated in a peroxide-based bleaching gel and you simply put them over your teeth for up to 30 minutes once a day, usually for two weeks.

Natural teeth whitening options

Abrasive substances such as charcoal and baking soda have been used to whiten teeth for decades. Some toothpaste varieties have started incorporating teeth-whitening substances. The main disadvantage of these remedies is that they require regular use to sustain the whiteness.

Teeth whitening benefits

It can make your teeth significantly whiter in a short amount of time.

Teeth whitening can improve your oral health by removing plaque and bacteria from your teeth, and it can help to prevent tooth decay and gum disease.

Teeth whitening risks

Tooth sensitivity is a common teeth whitening side effect. It is usually temporary, but it can be quite uncomfortable.

Teeth whitening can also damage tooth enamel, the protective layer that covers teeth. To prevent this from happening, always use teeth-whitening products according to their instructions and avoid using them too often.

Finally, teeth whitening is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women. Their gums are more sensitive than normal and may be harmed by the whitening agent.

How to whiten teeth safely

Use teeth whitening products as directed. Make sure the products are approved by the relevant quality agencies. To protect your enamel and gums, do not use whitening products too often.

If you plan to have teeth whitening done at your dentist's office, make sure you choose a qualified and experienced dentist who has been trained in teeth whitening procedures. Always ask about the risks and benefits of any teeth whitening procedure before you decide to undergo it. In general, laser teeth whitening is the most effective teeth whitening option, but it's also the most expensive.

Keep your teeth white

The best way to whiten your teeth sustainably is to keep up with your oral hygiene routine. This will include brushing teeth twice a day for two minutes each time and flossing daily to remove plaque from hard-to-reach areas between teeth. Reduce the intake of coffee, cigarettes, sugars, khat, and other substances that have been proven to stain teeth. Finally, don’t forget to visit your dentist regularly for teeth cleaning and removal of plaques.

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