We all want whiter teeth. This is evident by the ever increasing list of teeth whitening toothpastes, mouthwashes and gels promising whiter than white teeth. However, knowing the best treatment to apply is never black, nor dare we say it, white.
Before going down the teeth whitening path, it pays to know a bit about the teeth whitening process so you can make the best decision for you and your pearly whites.
How do teeth become stained?
When you eat and drink this is mixed with saliva and creates a thin film on the surface of the teeth known as the pellicle. This pellicule layer is mostly removed each time you brush your teeth. However, the pellicle contains tiny fragments of the food and drink and can get absorbed into the outer layer of the tooth enamel. This creates stains within the enamel that regular brushing cannot remove.
Do teeth whitening toothpastes or mouthwash work?
Brushing your teeth twice a day and rinsing with mouthwash is seriously good for your teeth. However, teeth whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes are limited in effectiveness to visibly whiten teeth. Also, some whitening agents may do more harm than good depending on the active ingredients involved.
Are over-the-counter teeth whitening gels effective?
Much like teeth-whitening toothpastes, over-the-counter whitening gels contain mild concentrations of bleaching agent (usually up to 6%). So this won’t be as effective as higher concentration gels prescribed and properly administered by a dentist. Dentists take certain precautions to prevent the bleaching agent affecting the gums and cheeks.
Why should I see a dentist to whiten my teeth?
Before making any change to your dental routine, getting the right advice is a great idea. Dentists provide a number of benefits when supervising the teeth whitening process:
In-chair whitening vs at-home whitening, which is better?
With a dentist, you may have the option of getting your teeth whitened in the dentist’s chair or using prescribed treatment to apply at home.
The differences of these treatments including benefits and considerations include:
How long does teeth whitening last?
Teeth whitening treatments can last from 6 months up to 3 years. This depends on your oral hygiene and also by avoiding (or limiting) the consumption of certain foods, drinks and habits. Tea, coffee and red wine can stain teeth quite easily. So too can foods like beetroot and berries. Also, tar and nicotine from cigarettes easily absorbs into the enamel. Nicotine, while colourless, turns yellow when exposed to oxygen so e-cigarettes should also be avoided.
If you choose to go down the teeth whitening path, it makes sense to do it with the right advice. Your dentist can advise what treatment is recommended for what you want to achieve. Your dentist can rectify any underlying teeth issues either before or after your treatment and advise on the best shade of white to aim for. Then after getting advice on your most appropriate teeth whitening method, you’ll be flashing your bright white teeth before you know it.
Dr Finkelstein Dentist in Sydney CBD is experienced in teeth whitening treatments. Dr Finkelstein prescribes Boutique Whitening treatment for his patients. After a consultation, we can have you on a safe path to whiter, brighter and healthier teeth.