Teeth whitening, sometimes referred to as teeth bleaching when bleach is used, is one of the most common forms of cosmetic dentistry available and most dentists provide teeth whitening treatments. Teeth whitening kits are often used to restore the natural shade of the teeth, although in some cases, bleaching beyond the natural shade is desired.
Reasons for whitening teeth are very broad and usually come down to personal preference, some people find confidence in having a brighter smile and some find that having whiter teeth helps them to appear younger and healthier.
Regardless of the reason, teeth whitening has had a long history in many civilisations with many unusual solutions and natural ways to whiten teeth being concocted on the path to defeating yellow teeth for a brighter smile. From ancient Egyptians to ancient romans to current day, white teeth have long been seen as desirable trait and a sign of good health.
Methods for teeth whitening can usually be divided into two categories:
Professional teeth whitening or professional bleaching –professional teeth whitening techniques applied in a dentists practice.
At home –home teeth whitening products that can be bought over the counter and applied by the consumer themselves with varying degrees of efficacy and results.
Here we will go over some of the pros and cons of some of the best teeth whitening methods available today.
Professional Teeth Bleaching
Professional teeth bleaching takes place in a dentists practice after the dentist has analysed the specific needs of the patient. The teeth are bleached either with carbamide peroxide, hydrogen peroxide or through laser treatment. Protective measures are taken to shield the gums from the bleach when using peroxides.
Teeth Whitening Kits
Teeth whitening kits often use a mouth guard type tray to apply milder bleach / teeth whitening gel over the teeth, to be used daily for a number of weeks.
Whitening strips are thin, peroxide coated strips that are applied to the teeth twice daily for around 14 days.
Whitening toothpastes are mostly abrasive and moderately whiten teeth by lifting stains from the surface of the teeth.
Whitening mouth rinses, such as the new CB12 White, tend to be non-abrasive and contain fluoride to strengthen teeth as well as whitening them.