The teeth-whitening market has boomed over the past decade or so. It’s become even easier for people to change the brilliance of their smile. This is far more than merely catering to vanity, though. If one is confident enough to show their teeth in a smile, it makes them seem more warm and personable, which can then lead to dramatic improvements in both their work and personal lives.
It’s not a difficult search either – they can find what they need in either their local pharmacy or in their dentist’s office. There are home remedies that are touted, but their reliability is suspect. It’s best to leave it to the professionals.
Toothpaste and Mouthwash
These are the easiest to find, usually in a pharmacy or even on shopping websites if one doesn’t like to brave the crowds. They are often made by the same companies that make their other familiar toothpastes and mouthwash.
People brush their teeth the normal way, preferably with an electric toothbrush. They then swish the mouthwash like any other mouthwash.
The secret to these, along with all other whitening products, is that they have hydrogen peroxide. This is what will bleach, or whiten, the teeth. They just have differing levels of it.
While the toothpaste and the mouthwash both contain hydrogen peroxide, the results take a while because of a couple of things:
- There is a smaller concentration of peroxide than the other choices. This means the bleaching action will not be as fast.
- Neither the toothpaste nor the mouthwash have much lasting contact with the teeth during each use. One tooth brushing session lasts two minutes and that’s twice a day. The mouthwash would generally be rinsed for a minute afterwards. That’s five minutes daily. People who have long-range plans and a smaller budget are generally the best fits for this. The mouthwash and toothpaste are generally in the same price range as other types of toothpaste, so it’s not a strain on a budget to get them.
The same companies that make the toothpaste and mouthwashes tend to make these. They are strips that have hydrogen peroxide, in a higher concentration, on them. The American Dental Association usually approves of them, especially from the more well-known brands.
They are applied on the row of teeth that the patient wants to whiten and left for roughly 45 minutes. Even though these have more peroxide, there is still a waiting period – carefully look at the fine print in those commercials. They usually say results are achieved over a period of weeks.
Although the strips are faster, it’s still a good idea to leave a bit of a buffer to allow the best results. This is not for people in a big hurry… and no, leaving them in all day won’t get one’s teeth super bright.
At The Dentist’s Office
A dentist is an excellent option for those who want to get their teeth whitened quickly. There are two options and they both get fast results:
- In-office – Patients who choose this can see a noticeable improvement of several shades of white in as little as one session.. The dentist uses a gel containing a lot of peroxide. They may even use lasers or other light spectrums. Due to its immediacy, this is the most expensive option, costing $500 or so. This is ideal for patients who may have had something pop up that demands quick results.
- At-home trays – The dentist will fill a series of mouthpieces, also called trays, with gel that is tailored to what the patient wants. The patient then wears a tray each day for a specified amount of time, moving on to the next one each day until they like what they see, It’s faster than the whitening strips thanks to the higher concentration of peroxide. The cost is usually higher than the at-home strips but less than the in-office treatment.
Each person’s budget varies and their timelines will too. If they are unsure of what they want, they can always discuss it with their dentist.