Everyone wants to have a whiter, healthy smile. Home teeth whitening has become an extremely popular means to achieve those pearlier whites in the past couple of decades. In many cases, over-the-counter whitening kits are effective and safe. However, there are some disadvantages and risks to using over-the-counter home whitening kits:
- Off-brand whitening kits often contain dangerous concentrations of bleach or peroxide. This can cause erosion of the tooth enamel, and irritation to the sensitive gums and soft tissues of the mouth.
- Because many kits contain trays that do not adhere properly to your teeth, gums can become irritated and chemicals can leak out and be ingested causing stomach problems.
- Poorly fitted trays and varying concentrations of chemicals from lower quality kits may also result in unwanted discoloration of teeth or uneven results.
- Exposure to excessively harsh chemicals in off-brand kits can also cause gum shrinkage and oral infections.
When considering at-home whitening, it is best to stick to name brand kits to ensure the quality and safety of the treatment. Many popular brands of kits are both safe and efficient when used as directed. In any case, you should not consider at-home whitening if any of the following apply:
- You have deep, untreated cavities.
- You are pregnant.
- You suffer from gum disease.
The safest and most effective method for whitening your teeth is to have treatment by a dental professional, either in-office or with professional take-home trays. A qualified dentist can whiten your teeth up to ten shades in as little as one office visit. Consult with your dentist before pursuing any type of whitening treatment to ensure you will achieve the whiter smile you desire in the safest and quickest manner possible.
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