Over time, teeth can become discolored from the foods you eat, age, oral health issues, and other factors. If you’re unhappy with the look of your smile on account of yellowing teeth, teeth whitening products can help. There are a number of over-the-counter products on the market and your dentist can also provide in-office or at-home whitening as well. The safest and most effective option for teeth whitening is always a product provided by your dentist. They’ll be able to customize the whitening treatment to help you achieve the look you want, ensuring that you don’t have any adverse reactions. There are also a number of DIY teeth whitening alternatives that you may have discovered searching teeth whitening on the internet.
If you’re wondering whether these options are safe, read on to learn more about why DIY teeth whitening can actually be dangerous.
How DIY Teeth Whitening Can Damage Your Teeth
Some of the DIY teeth whitening options you might have encountered include:
- Lemon juice
- Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide
- Activated charcoal
- Oil pulling
On the surface, it might seem like these products could remove stains. However, they can hurt your teeth in the process.
Lemon juice is acidic, and the bacteria that causes tooth decay thrives in an acidic environment. You can damage your enamel by applying lemon juice directly to your teeth, which can lead to more complications later on.
While baking soda and hydrogen peroxide are both ingredients used in some toothpaste and whitening solutions that are approved by dentists, DIY options can hurt your teeth. It’s easy to mix a solution that is too strong and that will damage your enamel.
Activated charcoal is a highly absorbent substance that could have the potential to absorb stains, but is also incredibly abrasive. Any stain-removing properties could be outweighed by the damage to your enamel.
Finally, oil pulling is the practice of swishing oil around your mouth, supposedly to remove toxins. However, there is no scientific evidence backing up this claim.
Before trying any DIY teeth whitening remedies, discuss your options with your dentist. They will be able to recommend a teeth whitening treatment to meet your needs.
Teeth Whitening, Visit Your Dentist
Dentist provided teeth whitening, is both safe and effective. Your dentist can actually provide a whitening solution in-office that is stronger than what you would be able to purchase over-the-counter. They can also give you specialty toothpaste to mitigate any sensitivity.
Over-the-counter options can also be effective, especially for less intense discoloration. Your dentist will advise you to use these treatments exactly as directed, as leaving them on for longer could hurt your teeth.
Whitening toothpaste can also keep your teeth white after a treatment. Talk to your dentist about the toothpaste they recommend.
If you have crowns, bonding, or veneers, teeth whitening treatments might not lift stains. However, these can all be custom-made in the shade you desire. Before getting veneers, crowns, or dental bonding, speak with your dentist about the look you want.
Cosmetic Dentistry Services at Columbia Smiles
Keep your teeth and gums healthy by choosing Columbia Smiles for teeth whitening and other cosmetic dentistry services. If you’re ready for a smile that makes you feel confident, reach out to our team. In our dental practice, we offer a wide array of services to treat any oral health issues you may have, prevent problems with your teeth and gums later on, and give you the smile of your dreams.