The first thing most people notice about others is their smile. For this reason, teeth-whitening products have become extremely popular in recent years. As the rest of the world advances technologically, teeth-whitening methods have been advancing along with them. Consequently, consumers have been flooded with a multitude of affordable at-home products that promise results comparable to the costly dentist whitenings.
Crest 3D Whitening Strips: These no-slip whitening strips are one of the few over-the-counter strips approved by the ADA. The strip stays on by itself until they are taken off, allowing you to talk and drink while you whiten. The instructions suggest using them once a day for thirty minutes for the best results. Initial results are seen in a few days and final results last up to six months.
“I use Crest Whitening Strips very often. From the first time I used them, I could see results. The strips also mold to your teeth so they are the most convenient method I have found,” senior Lisvey Perez said.
Baking Soda + Hydrogen Peroxide: One of the most effective DIY whitening methods is creating a paste of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. Baking soda and water release free radicals that break down stain-causing molecules on tooth enamel. When creating it, make sure to use less baking soda than hydrogen peroxide and make sure the paste is not gritty. Combine two tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide to one tablespoon of baking soda, stir it and start brushing. Before rinsing, let the paste stand for about a minute.
Activated Charcoal Powder: This is one of the latest methods for teeth whitening. Although there is no formal evidence that activated charcoal powder whitens teeth, many observations show that it is effective and provides many other health benefits. It is said to absorb plaque and other compounds that stain teeth. Avoid overusing this method, however, as too much use can cause erosion of tooth enamel.
“I have never heard of activated charcoal powder but I would definitely be willing to give it a try. I haven’t really tried teeth whitening yet but the results I have seen online look promising” senior Mauricio Cervantes said.
Tray-based Whitening: These can be purchased over-the-counter or from a dentist and usually involves filling up the tray with a gel whitening solution that is worn for a certain period of time. The typical use is a few hours a day, every day for four weeks. When purchased over-the-counter, the mouthpiece trays have drawbacks as they are “one size fits all”. In other words, the fit will not be exact and may thus lead to irritated gums.
It may take a few tries to find the method that works best for you but there is no doubt there are infinite products and methods waiting to be used. It is important to note that regardless of the method chosen, perfect results are unlikely. Any of these methods used excessively can cause severe damage to the enamel and gums of your teeth.