What Teeth Whitening Works Best?

Peroxides, such as hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide, contain very volatile oxygen molecules. When these oxygen molecules come into contact with surface stains on teeth, they react by breaking the chemical bonds that hold the stains in the enamel. This process “whitens” the teeth and restores the appearance of your smile. Both teeth whitening options use peroxide-based bleaching agents. Household systems contain 3 to 20% peroxide (carbamide or hydrogen peroxides).

Office systems contain 15 to 43% peroxide. Because teeth are porous, the whitening gel is absorbed by the enamel and dentin layers of the tooth. The active ingredient in whitening gels is hydrogen peroxide, which removes stains and is safely absorbed by the body. Most over-the-counter (OTC) whitening products use low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, while cosmetic dentists use higher concentrations for faster, more effective results. In-office teeth whitening by a dentist is the most effective way to get the best and safest results.

Stronger agents are used, but the mouth and gums are protected, and the dentist can customize the concentration of the whitening agent. In addition, a dentist can monitor any tooth sensitivity or other problems that may arise from treatment. Teeth can whiten up to 10 shades in just one hour. This is where real teeth whiteners come into play. Essentially, bleaches use whitening chemicals to penetrate tooth enamel and trigger a chemical reaction (specifically, an oxidation reaction) that breaks down stain compounds.

Tooth whitening is any process that lightens the color of a tooth. Whitening can be achieved by physical removal of the stain or a chemical reaction to lighten the color of the tooth. Bleaching is defined here as the chemical degradation of chromogens. The active ingredient in most bleaching products is hydrogen peroxide (H2O), which is administered as hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. Carbamide peroxide is a stable complex that decomposes on contact with water to release hydrogen peroxide. Because carbamide peroxide releases hydrogen peroxide, the chemistry of most teeth whitening is that of hydrogen peroxide.

These whitening trays also use hydrogen peroxide gel and blue LED light trays, which, according to the brand, will help the whitening ingredient remove stains more effectively. Whitening gels are peroxide-based gels that are applied with a small brush directly to the surface of the teeth. For optimal results, dentists usually give patients molded whitening trays for their teeth so they can follow up at home with whitening solutions. People with numerous restorations that could result in uneven whitening might be better off considering sticking, veneers or crowns rather than a teeth whitening system. 3D Crest white strips contain a low concentration of hydrogen peroxide to gently whiten teeth over time. Despite covering their face with masks, some Americans are increasingly investing in teeth whitening.

Home teeth whitening kits can definitely be effective, depending on the severity of dental stains and oral sensitivity. Young children who are exposed to antibiotics such as tetracycline and doxycycline when their teeth are forming (whether in the womb or as a baby) may have discoloration of their adult teeth later in life. This customization allows maximum contact between the whitening gel, which is applied to the mouthpiece tray, and the teeth. Studies of teeth whitening products using 10% carbamide peroxide showed no effect on the hardness or mineral content of the tooth enamel surface. Whitening products contain peroxide (hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide) and these products remove superficial and deep stains from teeth and can make teeth even lighter than their natural shade. The procedure involves applying a teeth whitening gel containing 25% to 40% hydrogen peroxide and then aiming a special heating lamp at the teeth for three 20-minute intervals, with the gel being reapplied between intervals.

If you are unsure about discoloration of your teeth, first consult with your dentist to find out what's causing it and make sure you are a candidate for teeth whitening. However, there are certain types of discoloration that cannot be corrected with whitening treatments, and there are certain dental or medical conditions that can reduce your chances of success with teeth whitening. Usually, following manufacturer's instructions, you will notice results from your teeth whitening within a few days - sometimes even lightening your teeth up to 1 or 2 shades! No, that's why it's important to talk to your dentist before deciding to whiten your teeth - bleaches may not correct all types of discoloration.

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