Teeth-whitening has gained a lot of popularity in NSW in recent years. People, especially under 35, are increasingly turning towards teeth whitening products and treatments to sport that perfectly white smile. If you are looking for a Liverpool dentist to talk you through the dos and don’ts of teeth whitening, the following article may give you a heads up.
What teeth whitening treatments are available?
You can visit your dentist for in-chair whitening sessions, or you can avail of the services of beauty treatment centres, and finally, you can also use teeth whitening products at home. This article talks about the first and third options available to you.
In-chair whitening sessions:
A whitening session at the dentist is the quickest route to a brighter smile. Unfortunately, whitening products sold over the counter are only available in mild doses. The application of doses in higher concentrations needs to be done by a dentist.
Specifically, the active bleaching agent in most teeth whitening products is hydrogen peroxide. Products contain it in concentrations ranging from 3-6% to 35%. According to the Poisons Standard, 3-6% hydrogen peroxide concentration is considered a Schedule 5 substance and can be sold over the counter. Licensed practitioners can only handle any proportion beyond that. Further, the Dental Board of Australia states that teeth whitening treatments using greater than 6% hydrogen peroxide are irreversible procedures and are thus restricted dental acts.
Therefore, if you opt for an in-chair session, you will be given an appropriate treatment that minimises your risk of hydrogen peroxide exposure while ensuring whiter teeth in a short duration as possible.
At-home teeth whitening:
The popularity of at-home whitening products has soared through the roof in recent years. A 2020 survey of 25,000 Australians revealed that one in five people choose teeth whitening bleaches. However, at-home whitening kits are more effective as complementary procedures to your in-chair sessions than as standalone procedures. Your dentist will create a customised gel tray for your jaw and advise you on using it with what specific product. It could include any of the following treatments:
LED Blue Light Treatment
You have to coat your teeth with a bleaching gel and expose it to blue light in this procedure. The gel gets activated and lifts the stains off your teeth. This treatment takes about a week to show the best results. Consult your dentist to recommend a suitable grade of treatment depending on your need.
Activated Charcoal in strip or toothpaste form
Charcoal is an excellent adsorbent and a mild abrasive and thus is perfect for removing surface-level stains – such as caffeine or wine stains. You can opt for teeth whitening kits for an immediate, short-term solution. Alternatively, you can use charcoal-infused toothpaste regularly for consistent brightness. Ask your dentist about which specific product suits your needs the most.
Whitening toothpaste can work by either abrading your teeth’ surface or by mildly bleaching your enamel. Check with your dentist on which product is best suited for you, especially if you already suffer from tooth sensitivity. Also, ensure you strictly follow the instructions while using the product.
Teeth Whitening strips
Whitening strips can give you relief as quickly as after the first use. However, that means they need to be applied carefully, avoiding gums altogether. You also need to ensure that you do not consume dark coloured beverages and food immediately after whitening. The frequency of application depends on your specific needs, and your dentist will guide you accordingly.
While teeth whitening procedures are available and effective, regular dental hygiene is one of the easiest ways to get a set of healthy, white teeth. Visit your Liverpool dentist frequently to ensure you are not suffering from caries, plaque build-up, fluorosis and tooth decay – all of which are significant contributors to discoloured teeth. A healthy mouth leads to a happy smile. Keep smiling!