The Many Shades of Dental Teeth Whitening

Dental teeth whitening consists of more then just those strips you can buy at the store. From toothpastes, over-the-counter gels and trays to agents acquired from your dentist, lots of teeth whitening systems are available.

Tooth whitening is perfect for people who have healthy gums and teeth with no fillings. Whitening is not permanent. The level of whiteness will differ from individual to individual depending on the state of the teeth, nature of the stain, the type of bleaching system used and for how long.

Dental teeth whitening toothpastes seem to be popping up everywhere and most of them really do work to varying extents. Like all other toothpastes, whitening toothpastes contain mild abrasives to remove surface stains.

They are perfect for people who smoke, drink coffee and tea and eat certain foods that can stain teeth.

If you decide to use a tooth whitening toothpaste, be sure that it contains fluoride for extra protection against tooth decay.

Tooth whitening is not suggested or will be less successful in the following situations:

  • Children under the age of 16 and pregnant or lactating women
  • People with sensitive teeth, periodontal disease or allergies to products should avoid chemical whitening techniques that can irritate tender gums
  • Persons with gum disease, worn enamel, cavities, and exposed roots
  • People with fillings, crowns and other restorations in their front teeth – the bleach will not change the color of these materials, making them stand out in your newly whitened smile
  • Individuals with unrealistic expectations
  • Individuals with darkly stained teeth

A crown or cap recommended to correct orthodontic problems may also result in a whiter and more appealing smile in some cases involving serious tooth or jaw problems.

Frequently Asked Questions About Teeth Whitening

  • Does insurance cover the cost of dental teeth whitening procedures?
  • No, this is not usually covered.

  • How long do the dental teeth whitening effects last?
  • People who expose their teeth to food and beverages that cause staining may see the whiteness start to fade in as little as one month. Others may be able to wait one year or longer before another whitening procedure or touch-up is needed.

  • Do whiteners damage tooth enamel?
  • Studies of whitening products containing 10% carbamide peroxide showed little to no effect on the hardness or mineral content of a tooth’s enamel surface.

  • Do whiteners damage existing dental restorations?
  • Over 10 years of clinical use of whiteners containing 10% carbamide peroxide have not shown any damage to existing fillings.

  • Do whiteners damage the nerves of the teeth?
  • There’s no evidence to date that the tooth whitening process has a harmful effect on the health of a tooth’s nerve.

Tooth whitening is the best thing to have happened for people with stained and discolored teeth. However, nine out of ten people in their obsession with getting that flashy Hollywood smile charge into teeth bleaching without understanding that there are side effects.

Prolonged bleaching can lead to severe irritation of the teeth and gums. Tooth dehydration is a common side effect with all whitening treatments. The teeth can look whiter once dehydrated. After a few days, when re-hydration occurs, the teeth relapse to a darker color.