When it comes to teeth whitening, we are impatient. Why do we have to wait months to achieve something you can achieve in a week? Teeth whitening has quickly become on the most-sought after cosmetic dental treatments around.
And while many people visit their dentist for laser teen whitening or bleaching, some people want to experiment with at-home teeth whitening kits. Unfortunately, whitening our teeth at home isn’t always as easy as it may seem. We’ve explored a few of the most common danger people face when they take their smiles into their own hands.
Here are four reasons why you should have a dental consultation before using at-home whitening kits:
Damage to tooth enamel:
At-home teeth whitening kits often advertise result in only minutes, in some cases, this is true. However, instant teeth whitening kits can also cause irreparable damage to your teeth’s enamel if used too frequently.
Unlike professional dental whitening, at-home whitening kits can contain chlorine dioxide – the same acid you clean your pool with. And while it strips away stains to create a pearly glow, there’s nothing stopping it from also stripping off your enamel.
Most at-home whitening it also contains hydrogen peroxide, which is known to cause receding gums and burns.
Most problems dentists see in patients using at-home whitening kits come from chemical burns and/or infections. Chemicals can burn the inside of your mouth quickly, leaving you vulnerable to the high levels of bacteria that live in your mouth. This is especially true for those who have ineffective dental hygiene.
Ill-fitting mouth guards are a common cause of chemical leakage, and exposure to hydrogen peroxide can cause both internal and external side effects. Always be certain that your mouth guard fits snuggly to avoid possible spillage of product.
Know Your Strength
The primary difference between whitening products is the strength of the peroxide. Most whitening strips come in concentrations of approximately 10%. Over-the-counter gels also contain around 5-10%. Professional whitening trays you use at home have concentration levels between 15-35%. The strongest type of whitening is professional in-office whitening which generally comes in strengths greater than 30%.
For the most part, at-home whitening kits are safe to use, but it’s a good idea ask your dentist which product they recommend before starting a whitening regimen.
Dr. Matthew Wittrig will work with you to create a personalized whitening regimen to give you an award-winning smile. To learn about alternative ways to brighten your smile, call us at (317) 882-4028 or stop by our office in Greenwood Indiana.