Whitening strips are easy to use, cheap and convenient.
They can be applied at home, at the office, on vacation and on your own time. There’s no preparation, no gel to apply, or tray to insert in your mouth and it takes anywhere from five to thirty minutes.
Here are some things to consider when using whitening strips.
Are Whitening Strips Safe?
Most whitening strips use a bleaching agent containing peroxide, which can cause some side effects. The most common side effects are tooth sensitivity and irritated gums. If you already have sensitive teeth and receding gums this could add to the problem. On the other hand, whitening strips may be a good alternative to whitening your teeth at a dental practice as these whitening agents can be detrimental to those with sensitivity issues.
Side effects should subside once you’re finished using the whitening strips. It’s critical to follow the instructions especially the length of time the strips should be left in place. They should not stay on all night and you shouldn’t brush your teeth right before the application.
Do Whitening Strips Work?
Whitening strips can brighten teeth in some people but not everybody. The whitening will only work on tooth enamel. It will not work on tooth discoloration related to antibiotics, decay or trauma to the enamel. Surface stains that develop over the years can brighten up with the help of whitening strips. Stains can be due to drinking coffee or tea, drinking red wine or consuming other substances that alter the color of the enamel.
In order for whitening strips to work, the teeth have to be healthy as do the gums.
Will Whitening Strips Affect The Color of Dental Work?
Whitening strips will not alter the color of any dental restorations such as fillings, replaced teeth, dentures or crowns. These restorations were made to permanently match the color of your teeth. The synthetic material will not change color with whitening strips.
How do Whitening Strips Work?
Whitening strips work in a similar way to bleaching your clothes or bleaching your hair. The peroxide-containing bleaching agents actually change the color of the tooth. Hydrogen peroxide penetrates the surface and attacks and destroys the colored substances causing the stains. The molecules that cause the stains fall apart.
Most strips are coated with gel, which contains peroxide. You apply the strips to your upper and lower teeth, ensuring that the enamel is covered. After the required amount of time you remove the strips. They’re very easy to use.
What is Good to Know About Whitening Strips?
If the strips aren’t applied to the entire exposed area of the tooth, there may be uneven whitening.
Peroxide may cause gum damage such as irritation, inflammation, or discoloration.
Overuse can cause problems such as erosion of the tooth enamel.
Immediately after treatment you may see white spots on the surface of the enamel. This is due to water loss from the enamel. It’s temporary and will disappear.
The peroxide may come in contact with your saliva and you may experience excess saliva or foaming while wearing whitening strips. This is normal and will go away once the strips are removed.
When Will the Whitening Strips Start to Work?
Everyone is unique and will experience different results. The whitening strips will start working immediately by bleaching the color from your enamel. You will likely notice a difference in five to seven days.
How long will my teeth remain whitened?
This will depend on some of your habits that cause teeth to stain such as smoking and drinking coffee, tea or red wine. It’s reported that whitening can last approximately 12 months depending on diet and oral hygiene.
What is The Difference Between Whitening Strips & Professional Whitening?
Whitening strips continue to grow in popularity due to their convenience and cost even with some of their disadvantages.
Whitening in the dentist office is done in a controlled environment but not everybody is a good candidate for this type of whitening. If the dentist decides you’re a good candidate then products are used and treatments are made based on your unique requirements.
Before starting any whitening treatment it’s important to visit your dentist to discuss whether you might be a good candidate. Your teeth and gums will be evaluated. Any concerns with your mouth should be looked at before using whitening strips.
Everyone wants a beautiful, healthy, bright smile and this can only be done through regular visits to the dentist as well as taking good care of your teeth at home. Before spending money on any product discuss your concerns or plans with your dentist and they can help you with a treatment plan that is unique for you.
A healthy mouth gives you a better chance at successful teeth whitening. Follow these guidelines and you’ll soon be on your way to a beautiful smile.
Do you have questions about teeth whitening strips? How about having a whiter smile? Talk to Dr. Macatangay and team at our office and get your oral health back on track.