As time goes on, aging, prescription drugs, caffeine, nicotine, and candy among other things can make our teeth less pearly white. With age, we can all use a bit of teeth whitening strategies to make our teeth gleam and shine anew again and give us a flashier and more confident smile. There are many ways you can bring back the sparkle in your teeth, from home remedies and over-the-counter treatments to professional high technology procedures that may cost you a bit but give more effective results.
It is best to consult your dentist regarding teeth whitening options and alternatives available in your particular case. Some types of discoloration may be harder to whiten more than others. In general, yellowed teeth are reliably lighter to whiten than brownish or grayish teeth. If your problem is yellowed teeth, a good cleaning from your dentist wearing landau scrubs may just do the trick. If not, you can check over-the-counter solutions. There are toothpastes especially formulated for whitening teeth. There are also teeth whitening kits that you have to apply on a regular basis.
Using teeth whitening products with hydrogen peroxide as active ingredient is one of the cheapest ways to whiten teeth. Look for a product that has low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide. A gel kit and dental tray can lighten the teeth a shade or two lighter in just two weeks. This is applied a short time every day. There are also whitening strips that keep the peroxide off the gums, concentrating mainly on the six front teeth. Paint-on gels do the same while covering more teeth, although they can be quite messy to use. Hydrogen peroxide works very well in removing stains from smoking and beverages.
Carbamide peroxide is gentler than hydrogen peroxide and is available in gel form in different concentrations, usually 10, 15, or 20 percent. Depending on its strength, this whitening gel could lighten the teeth several shades. Naturally, higher strengths work faster and more effectively but they also increase the chances of getting sensitive teeth. There are ways to counter sensitive teeth, however, one of which is applying fluoride which is an ingredient in a lot of famous-brand toothpastes.
If you want to get really fast results, you can avail of a 60-90 minute bleaching session with your dentist. This procedure usually makes use of light-activated formula consisting of 35% hydrogen peroxide. It will lighten the teeth by as much as 10 shades lighter. This is ideal for extreme cases of darkened or discolored teeth.
Porcelain veneers or bonding
If bleaching proves to be ineffective or your dentist advices against it you can consider porcelain veneers or bonding. This is for those who have intrinsic or tetracycline staining. Porcelain veneers are thin porcelain contoured over the teeth while bonding is a resin.
Things to consider:
Take note that whitening treatments, even the expensive ones, are not permanent and you may need to get touch-ups yearly. Most of these treatments also tend to destroy the natural protection of the teeth and thus make your teeth easily sensitive.