Are you ready to get your teeth whitened?

TruthSome estimates suggest that up to a quarter of a million UK people will have teeth whitening this year.

So it would seem that we have finally bought into the American ethos that if your smile is bright and white, you feel younger and happier.

With an overload of whitening treatments now available, are they really all as safe as their blurb claims they are? We’ve investigated whether some of these treatments will result in great smiles or just empty bank balances.


Whitening toothpastes and powders

These are nothing new and despite costing more than your usual toothpaste they are used by millions of us on a daily basis.

There are two main types; those which contain ingredients such as bicarbonate of soda which grind away the stains and those which bleach the stains away.

While they undoubtedly provide better results than your common or garden variety, what we don’t see is any damage they are causing to our teeth.

Much criticism of late has been directed at the abrasive particles in these toothpastes which are used to remove stains. These can actually wear away the tooth enamel over time. Some dentists are now saying that hydrogen peroxide, the best known bleaching agent, can be carcinogenic and cause weakening of the teeth.


Home bleaching kits

Again, these are not a new invention and have been around in various shapes and forms for years. They also vary greatly in price depending on where you buy them.

The general premise is that either a hydrogen peroxide gel or solution is placed in a tray which is then worn over your teeth, usually at night, for up to 2 weeks.

They claim to whiten teeth by between 6 to 8 shades. And while some people swear by them, there are dozens of horror stories out there regarding DIY tooth whitening.

Blistered lips, burnt gums and irreparable damage to tooth enamel have all been reported as down sides of home teeth bleaching. The strength of the hydrogen peroxide is key to safe teeth bleaching and many of these kits contain industrial strength of the type you would find in a hairdressers.

If the price tag makes this kind of treatment appealing take a step back and consider how much you could end up paying your dentist to try and rectify the damage you have done to your teeth… a sobering thought.


Professional treatments

Recommended dentists offer a wide range of teeth whitening treatments. Which one is most suitable for you personally will be decided when you visit them for an appraisal.

When you visit your recommended dentist you will also have a realistic expectation of the results, and not suffer the disappointment which commonly arises from other methods. If your teeth can only be lightened by 3 to 4 shades, for example, your dentist will tell you this (something a home kit never will).

If you want your teeth whitened safely, always stick with your recommended dentist, as you can relax in the knowledge you are only being given the treatment you are suitable for and will not feel let down by the results.


To book your consultation call 0141 332 1101.

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