Is teeth whitening safe?

A smile is the most attractive feature of a person’s face and an expression of happiness. Smiles that show teeth are considered to be the happiest smiles, but they can be overlooked if the teeth are not aesthetically pleasing to look at.

Any aesthetic issues of the teeth such as stained teeth can cause a person to stop smiling. However, teeth whitening procedures can help clean the teeth and bring back the smile.

How do teeth get stained?

Teeth can get stained and become yellow, or grey or they can develop a layer of plaque over them. These discolourations and stains happen due to two main reasons:

  • Intrinsic damage
  • Extrinsic damage

Intrinsic damage refers to discolourations and staining of the teeth that result from the inside of the tooth. The damage from the inside of the tooth can be due to tooth infections, trauma, childhood infection, and the use of certain medications.

Intrinsic damage to the teeth needs to be treated professionally and the teeth whitening procedure done to remove the staining has to be performed at a dental clinic in Dubai. A trained professional should bleach the teeth and appropriate measures then need to be taken to avoid further staining.

Extrinsic damage, on the other hand, is caused by factors outside of the tooth. Teeth discolourations from food or smoking are considered to be extrinsic damage and teeth whitening for these can be performed at home. With extrinsic damage, the stains are completely on the outside of the tooth.

Teeth whitening treatments

Teeth whitening treatments are of various types, and each one targets different kinds of stains and discolourations. The different types of teeth whitening can be divided into a broader category of in-office treatments and at-home treatments.

Treatments in a Dentist’s Office

This type of teeth whitening is performed for more serious staining and discolouration, mostly those that are a direct result of intrinsic damage to the teeth. As they have to be performed at a dentist’s office, it is highly recommended to choose the best dental clinic in Dubai for the treatment.

The result of a teeth whitening done by a dentist in-office last longer as a higher concentration of hydrogen peroxide is used for the whitening process. Only a few appointments to the dental clinic in Dubai will be required for pearly white teeth.

At home treatments

At-home treatments are mainly for damage done to the teeth extrinsically, or from the outside. These types of teeth whitening treatments include:

  • Teeth whitening toothpaste

There is quite a hype around whitening kinds of toothpaste as they provide similar results to teeth whitening treatments. However, the results take a time to show. The main ingredient in these kinds of toothpaste is chemical abrasives which target the stained coating of the tooth and break it down.

Some whitening toothpastes also use blue covarine which provides much quicker results than other whitening toothpaste.

  • Whitening strips

Whitening strips are available over-the-counter and the main ingredient in these strips is hydrogen peroxide. However, the concentration is much lower than those used by professionals in a dental clinic in Dubai.

Teeth whitening strips need to be applied twice a day, for a period of time which differs from manufacturer to manufacturer.

  • Activated charcoal

Many people use activated charcoal at home as a teeth whitening product. However, there is no scientific evidence backing the use of activated charcoal. Recently. Toothpaste manufacturers have begun to sell whitening toothpaste with activated charcoal as the main ingredient.

Is Teeth Whitening Permanent

Teeth whitening is not a permanent procedure but once you have gotten your teeth whitened, you can maintain the results by preventing any extrinsic damage and using certain kinds of toothpaste to protect from the intrinsic damage. This way, the white colour of your teeth will be maintained long after the teeth whitening treatment.

Common Side Effects of Teeth Whitening Services

Teeth whitening services expose your teeth and gums to chemical abrasives and bleaching agents, which can cause certain side effects. It is important to discuss these potential risks with your dentist before deciding to get teeth whitening done.

The two most common side effects of teeth whitening services are:

  • Sensitive teeth

As the teeth whitening process requires the use of chemicals that work on breaking down the layer of discolouration, it is possible for the top layer of teeth to be damaged slightly as well. This makes teeth sensitive to cold temperatures and air. To help with sensitivity, dental products containing potassium nitrate and sodium fluoride can be used. Dental sensitivity will resolve a couple of days after the appointment.

  • Gum Irritation

It is possible that exposure to bleaching agents during teeth whitening can irritate the gums. This risk is much more exaggerated in people with receding gums and raised gums. However, this side effect only lasts for a short time after the appointment and resolves spontaneously.