Perfect Smile: How Do Whitening Strips Work?

Many people get confused with the thought that people with super-white teeth have healthy ones. Well, it can stay true; teeth that do not have stains and discolorations look perfect. The only difference is the way you achieved that cleanliness and luminosity. Did you have professional teeth whitening or you resorted to DIY procedures and use your whitening strips at home? The health and safety of your pearly whites rely on your actions. Like, how do whitening strips work?


Teeth Whitening Options

Because teeth whitening continues to be the number one cosmetic dentistry procedure people all over the world request and undergo, there is no surprise in the fact that many dentists and dental manufacturers design different whitening procedures to fit everyone’s preferences and dental conditions.

Our teeth really have the tendency to stain and become yellow because of our diet and dental hygiene. As we age, our teeth darken naturally. However, surface stains from the foods we eat and tobacco use can cause the teeth to darken even further resulting in varying shades of grey and yellow. There are many ways to whiten the teeth. Here are some of the teeth whitening options you can choose from to suit your needs and preferences.


professional teeth whiteningProfessional Teeth Whitening

Your dentist can offer a 2 to a 3-session procedure where he applies bleaching chemicals to your teeth to remove the stains and discolorations on your enamel. Many consider this procedure as the most effective and safest because you are being monitored by a professional during the procedure.

Whitening Toothpaste

We know that cosmetic dentistry procedures can cost you a fortune, so many would resort to using convenient and affordable means to whiten teeth. What’s great about whitening toothpaste tubes is their availability and easy use.

Whitening Mouthwash And Rinses

Just like toothpastes, dental hygiene manufacturers also came up with mouth rinses that can also gradually help in whitening the teeth. They perform their action using hydrogen peroxide that cleanse and bleach the teeth. Although its effect is minimal compared to in-office teeth whitening, if you aim to maintain the whiteness of your teeth after your procedure, then rinsing with this product can help you achieve it.

Whitening Strips

Whitening strips have clear hydrogen or carbamide peroxide-based gels applied with an adhesive directly to the surface of your teeth. The adhesive sticks to the teeth to keep them firmly together and avoid affecting the gums. As the hydrogen peroxide comes into contact with your teeth it oxidises which bleaches the teeth and makes them look much whiter. Carbamide peroxide works in a similar fashion but contains acid which also breaks up stains.

Instructions in using the whitening strips differ and would rely on the strength of the peroxide content. You need to follow the directions on the product you chose carefully. Initial results are seen in a few days, and final results last about 4 months. A full course takes between 10 and 14 days. You may need to apply them twice a day.


How do Whitening Strips Work?

Whitening strips typically have a slim coat of hydrogen peroxide or other active bleaching ingredients, sticking to a flexible plastic strip. The active ingredients in whitening strips may differ based on the manufacturer’s preference, but most of them use carbamide or hydrogen peroxide.

Whitening strips work as they bleach off surface stains. Depending on the amount of bleaching chemicals that they contain, these strips can also go through the tooth enamel and a slim layer of dentin to remove inherent stains from deep within the tooth.  Because of the considerably harsh bleaching products that they contain, if not used correctly, whitening strips can be harmful to your teeth.


Whitening Strips: What to Watch Out for

Correct use of this product will always be reminded because of the bleaching chemicals it contains.

teeth whitening labelsYou should always check the label of your chosen whitening strips. While most of the widely available whitening products contain peroxides, some use chlorine dioxide, a bleaching chemical that has far harsher effects than the former. Chlorine dioxide can erode the enamel, causing damage and sensitivity.

Always follow the instructions on how to use the whitening strips. Do not use them for a prolonged period of time. The frequency and duration of use of each whitening strip should be followed to ensure the integrity and efficiency of the product.

Incorrect use of your whitening strips can change the smoothness and color of your teeth. It can also affect the integrity of your dental fillings and bondings. If you also have orthodontic appliances like braces and permanent retainers, the bleaching chemical of your whitening strips can affect the metal parts. Be sure that you consult your dentist before trying any at-home whitening products.

Yellowish or stained teeth can be made significantly whiter with the use of DIY or over-the-counter products which include teeth whitening strips and whitening toothpaste. Teeth whitening strips are typically safe to use, as long as you know how to follow package directions accurately. There are even options for people with highly sensitive teeth.

If you feel unsure about how to choose a whitening brand or product, you should consult your dentist so he can give you the best advice on what to use.