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7 Truths About Teeth Whiteners

7 Truths About Teeth Whiteners

Posted by: Purrfect Dential

It seems like everybody today wants to have white teeth, including myself. I guess everybody wants to have that Hollywood superstar smile. The other day I went to a pharmacy in my neighborhood and looked at the whitening products that were available. I was amazed! There were so many available I didn’t know what to choose. They all claimed that they could give me white teeth and a bright smile. I wanted to know what I should buy so I did extensive research and discovered the truth about teeth whitening. I want to share some of those truths with you here:

1. Too much of a good thing can definitely be bad. Teeth whitening products are great if you use them occasionally, but if you use them too much you can damage your teeth. People who overuse whitening products can develop what is called “blue teeth”. This happens when your teeth are bleached so much that they become somewhat transparent with a blue tinge. To avoid this I would suggest using a full dose of whitening at first and then only use a touch-up dose once a month after that. If you don’t develop any more stains, then don’t feel like you have to use more.

2. Teeth whitening regulation. Contrary to popular belief teeth whitening products are actually not regulated by the FDA. Actually they’re not regulated by any government agency. Some products will claim some kind of FDA approval, but this is misleading. Watch out for teeth whitening products that have to use misleading information to sell their products.

3. If you have stains that were caused by antibiotics such as tetracycline, teeth whiteners won’t be able to remove them. The chemical composition of the stains aren’t affected by the teeth whitening agents.

4. Calcium is key. When you’re looking for a teeth whitening product be sure to check if it has “free” calcium. Teeth whiteners with “free” calcium in them can actually strengthen your teeth while they whiten. They also tend to have less sensitivity problems.

5. Are you too old for white teeth? Probably not, but it has been shown that younger people tend to return to their natural whiteness quicker. So, if you’re young at heart or have a lot of discoloration then you may have to use the teeth whitening product longer.

6. Mismatched teeth. One thing to be aware of when you whiten your teeth is that dental work such as crowns, veneers and bridges will most likely not be affected by tooth whiteners. So, you may end up with different colored teeth. I would suggest using teeth whiteners in shorter durations in order to match your teeth with your dental work.

7. How white is too white? If you are using an over-the-counter teeth whitening product it is important to know when you should stop. Many people become addicted to teeth whitening and end up with transparent and highly sensitive teeth. Professionals tend to agree that when your teeth match the whites of your eyes you should stop.

When you decide that you want to whiten your teeth, it’s important that you do a little research. If you just go to the store and pick up whatever, you may be wasting your money on an ineffective product or worse paying for a product that causes you a lot of pain.

Jay used many of the resources at [] as well as [] to write this article. Jay Schaefer is a writer and tester for the International Consumer Guidance Council.

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Is Bleaching the Best Method of Home Teeth Whitening?

Is Bleaching the Best Method of Home Teeth Whitening?

Posted by: Purrfect Dential

Teeth whitening is more than a fad, it’s a multi-billion-dollar industry that will see more than 10 millions Americans spend over (an estimated) $2 billion this year. Teeth whitening is by far the most common cosmetic service provided by dentists right across America, and the sales growth in mail-order and over-the-counter products has surged on a massive scale.

But are brilliant white teeth really achievable? Is teeth whitening safe? Does it hurt? What is the best method? Can you do it at home? These are all very common questions, and in general you will find the answers to be: Yes, Yes, Not normally, (arguably) Bleaching, Yes.

Whiter teeth can be achieved via a number of different methods, both at your dentist (or professional teeth whitening office) and at home. In fact, many dentists actually perform the first one or two treatments, then get you all kitted-up so you can do the rest at home. but that’s for the ‘bleaching’ methods, there are other avenues you can travel down in your quest for whiter teeth that involve structural changes to your teeth, like ‘bonding’ and ‘porcelain veneers’.

Bleach-based teeth whitening products all basically have the same goal – to penetrate deep into your tooth enamel to rid it of stains. Tooth enamel is porous, so brushing and scouring products don’t work, and this is where bleach-based tooth whitening products come into play. You see the most effective methods actually use bleaching chemicals to penetrate deep into the tooth enamel. They set off an oxidising process that breaks down the staining compounds in the enamel leaving you with bright white teeth. Sounds simple, but there are many products on the market that fall short of promises. Most over-the-counter products only ever manage to whiten teeth marginally, while the more professional products can provide you with extreme changes to the whiteness of your teeth.

The entry-level teeth whitening product would be a whitening toothpaste. Some people have demonstrated a slight improvement in brightness, but because a toothpaste isn’t exposed to your teeth for very long (you only brush for a few minutes), they typically are not able to penetrate deep enough to have much effect. Some toothpastes actually contain very strong chemicals that are aimed at working quickly (based on the short timeframe they are exposed to your teeth) and instead of working to penetrate the enamel and oxidise/clean the stains, they can actually work as an abrasive that will etch away the enamel.

Next in line we have whitening strips. Whitening Strips are thin, flexible pieces of plastic that have been coated on one side with a thin film of hydrogen-peroxide bleach (normally 6-10% strength). They are pressed against the top and lower teeth and normally need to be worn for 30 mins (twice daily) for 7-14 days. They do work, but because they cannot get into all the nooks and crannies and gaps between teeth, the results can sometimes be blotchy and less desirable than anticipated.

Getting more serious, we have bleach-based tooth whitening products which will involve a tray being placed in your mouth that has been injected with a ‘bleaching’ solution (hydrogen peroxide). This procedure can be done at home or by your dentist, or by a combination of dentist / at home. You can buy cheap over-the-counter ‘boil and bite’ trays that are virtually ready to use out of the packet. You boil the tray to get it hot and mouldable, place it in your mouth and bite into it. The end-result is a ‘partially’ moulded tray that is ready for use. The disadvantage of this type of tray is that it will not fit snugly which results in inconsistent results and leakage of the bleaching gel into your mouth and gums. Leakage of the bleach into the mouth is undesirable for obvious reasons, and smears on/around the gums can result in temporary (and even long terms) bleaching of the gums.

Professional systems see you being fitted out with a custom-fitting tray which is essential to assure proper bleaching and consistent results. Using a custom tray will almost definitely result in less leakage into you mouth and gums. Custom fitting trays can be acquired directly from your dentist or from various online specialists who have a DIY custom tray kit. With this type of system you actually get shipped all the necessary items to make an impression of your teeth so your own custom-fitting stray can be made. You basically make your impression with the items provided, place it in the preaddressed packing envelope and mail it off. They will make your customized bleaching trays in a certified laboratory and send them back to you within 2-7 business days… than all you need to do is apply the gel into the tray and put it in your mouth for the recommended periods.

The most important part of a teeth whitening system is the gel that is used. You can have an expensive custom-fitted tray (mouthpiece), but if you don’t have the right teeth whitening gel, you will spend far too much time with the tray in your mouth and or your results will not be as expected. To understand the differences between whitening gels and why they are considered as the best tooth whitener, it is preferable to understand exactly what they are made of, and what they actually do.

Most gels contain either carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide, and some contain fillers and flavors. Carbamide peroxide actually breaks down into hydrogen peroxide in the mouth. Hydrogen peroxide is the active whitener (it’s the same chemical that will bleach your hair). The difference between most gels is the strength of the peroxide. Most gels these days are around 15% and up, with some of the most popular being around 22%. The strength of the peroxide obviously will play a determining factor in how long you need to leave the tray in your mouth, and tooth sensitivity can be a major part of deciding on what strength to use. But, in saying that, it is not actually the strength of the peroxide that usually causes sensitivity, but rather the length of time that the teeth are exposed to the chemical. That is why some people prefer to go for a higher strength (such as 22%) but use it for a shorter period of time. You can also get higher strengths like 35%, but these are only recommended for short ‘bursts’ of maintenance, perhaps monthly for periods of 15-30mins.

Other types of professional teeth whitening include bonding and porcelain veneers. These both involve actual structural change to your teeth. Bonding involves a composite resin that is moulded onto the teeth to change their color and to reshape them. The resin material can stain and chip over time. Bonding can usually be done in one office visit for $300-$700 per tooth. Porcelain veneers are shell-like facings that can be bonded onto stained teeth. They are used to reshape and/or lengthen teeth as well as to whiten. Veneers require at least two office visits and cost $700 to $1,200 per tooth.

There are many ways to get the white teeth that so many people desire. Have a peek at to learn more about the various methods.

Written by Jim McDonald, a writer for, an informative website about Teeth Whiteners and what is the best Home Teeth Whitening Kit.

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