Teeth Whitening and Oral Health: What You Need to Know
Your smile is one of the first things people notice about you. Having white teeth can make a big difference in the appearance of your smile. For this reason, teeth whitening has become a leading cosmetic procedure. However, it is vital to remember that oral health should always come first.
What Is Teeth Whitening?
Teeth whitening is a cosmetic procedure that removes stains and discoloration from teeth to improve their appearance. It involves different methods. These include at-home kits, professional treatments at a dental office, and natural remedies like oil pulling.
At-home kits are often less expensive than professional treatments. You can buy them over the counter at a drugstore or online. These kits come with a set of trays filled with a bleaching agent. You place them over your teeth for them to start working. At-home kits are convenient and affordable. However, they may not produce the same results as professional treatments.
Professional teeth whitening treatment happens in a dental office. A dental professional does them. These treatments involve a higher concentration of bleaching agents to produce faster, more dramatic results. However, they are more expensive than at-home kits. Natural remedies like oil pulling involve swishing oil around in your mouth to remove toxins and bacteria.
How Does Teeth Whitening Work?
Most teeth whitening methods use a form of bleaching agent to break down stains on the teeth. The most common bleaching agent used is hydrogen peroxide. It releases oxygen molecules that penetrate the enamel and break down stains.
Bleaching agents have different concentrations. Higher concentrations produce faster results.
What Are the Risks of Teeth Whitening?
Teeth whitening is safe. However, there are some risks involved. Overuse of bleaching agents can cause tooth sensitivity and gum irritation. It can also damage the enamel of the teeth. It is vital to follow instructions for teeth whitening products and avoid overusing them.
Teeth whitening may also not suit everyone. People with gum disease or teeth sensitivity may not be good candidates. Avoid the whitening process if you have worn enamel. Additionally, some medications can cause teeth discoloration that whitening treatments cannot remove.
Maintain Oral Health
Oral health should always come first. Brush your teeth twice a day and floss daily. Regular dental checkups are also essential for maintaining healthy teeth and gums. Eating a healthy diet low in sugar and high in nutrients can keep your teeth healthy. Avoid foods and drinks known to stain teeth. These include coffee, red wine, and tea.
Consult Your Dentist
Consult your dentist before starting any teeth whitening treatment. They can evaluate your teeth and gum health. In doing so, they will determine if teeth whitening is a safe and effective option for you.
Your dentist can recommend the best method for your needs. They will advise you on how to use the product safely and effectively. They can also monitor your progress and address any concerns or side effects that may arise during treatment.
For more on teeth whitening and oral health, visit Advance Dental Health at our office in Phoenix, Arizona. Call 480-405-0300 to book an appointment today.