In Afdent’s 40+ years of providing patient friendly dentistry, one of the most common questions we get from patients is “how do I get my teeth whiter?” This is usually followed up with “is it safe to do at home?”
Sparkling white teeth can boost one’s confidence and also helps makes a good first impression. Who doesn’t like a nice big bright smile? With growing interest in achieving this, a lot of DIY teeth whitening hacks have emerged on the internet bearing promising results. But it some cases, these do-it-yourself teeth whiteners can actually do more harm than good. Here’s what you need to know:
Baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and activated charcoal are three of the most popular ingredients for at-home teeth bleaching nowadays. You’ve probably seen the foolproof whitening ads on social media. Although many whitening toothpaste brands have baking soda & hydrogen peroxide, the percentages are low and safe for everyday use. A highly concentrated version of hydrogen peroxide, in particular, would be capable of causing a lot of to the people exposed to it, including skin and eye irritation, skin problems, and more. In fact, those who handle it on an industrial level tend to be advised to maintain proper care and keep the compound stored in chemical cabinets (like the ones available at Storemasta or similar online stores) so as to reduce exposure. However, for dental procedures, a diluted version is used.
But our dentists don’t recommend that people put them directly on their teeth. The same goes for activated charcoal which has become a popular face and body scrub agent in the beauty community. The truth is, these so-called DIY teeth bleachers can harm your mouth. Due to their highly abrasive texture, they can tear down your enamel and make your teeth more prone to decay. Activated charcoal, in particular, could potentially be very abrasive and may damage teeth or gums.
Turn Teeth Yellow
You can suffer from permanent enamel loss after long periods of using DIY whiteners. Some of the telltale signs are when your teeth take on a yellowish tint and develop a rough texture. If you see in the mirror that your pearly whites are turning yellow, don’t let your first instinct be grabbing DIY teeth whiteners. Instead, visit Afdent right away so we can confirm if the discoloration is caused by either stains or enamel loss.
Increase Your Temperature Sensitivity
Apart from inflicting harm on your enamel, DIY teeth whiteners can damage your gums. This will result in increased sensitivity. When you’re eating cold or hot food, you will feel a sudden jolt of pain. Any bleaching system with peroxide comes with the risk of gum and tooth sensitivity, and at Afdent we generally recommend patients start using a toothpaste for sensitive teeth at least 2 weeks prior to bleaching.
Turn to Afdent Patient Friendly Dentistry
If you wish to achieve that sparkling white smile, don’t fall for DIY teeth whitening hacks. It is important to find a dentist you trust, so schedule a free consultation at Afdent to talk with our dental professionals to discuss your goals and intentions before committing to a procedure. Now is a great time to change your smile to the grin you have always dreamed about.