With all the over-the-counter stuff to whiten our teeth, why have it professionally done? They say teeth whitening at home is relatively easy, and whitening toothpaste is marketed as effective.

Over-the counter teeth whitening products

The chemistry of over-the-counter whitening products varies. Some cannot bleach the teeth permanently, and, in the opposite direction, could be very strong and damaging to tooth enamel, causing new sensitivities. This remains a toss-up for the consumer, as it is impossible to determine the chemical comparisons.

Whitening strips are awkward to manage and will only whiten the front six teeth, so there may be a notable contrast with teeth towards the back, depending on how big the smile.

Whitening toothpaste, although classified as a whitener, is not very effective, matching results with ordinary toothpaste that does not promise a whitening.

Solutions the Dentist Can Use

Many people desiring to whiten their teeth ultimately end up in the dentist chair, because, after spending their money on OTC whitening products, the cost did not justify the results.

A dentist can use a more concentrated solution than what can be purchased at the drug store. A professional can also use a combination of procedures, such as a whitening gel combined with high-intensity light to remove deep discolorations and stains from teeth.

Who is a good candidate for teeth whitening procedures?

This question may be over-looked when seeking to whiten teeth with OTC products. There are a few people who should not whiten their teeth. For instance, persons with crowns, dental bonding or porcelain veneers on the front teeth are not candidates for whitening, because restorative materials do not respond to whitening agents. In those cases, the cost of the whitening procedure and lack of results will lead to disappointment.

Whitening may not be effective on all types of discoloration. Yellowed teeth may whiten very well, but brown teeth or those discolored by certain medication won’t respond to whitening.

Whitening may worsen some dental conditions

This is why it is important to look before you leap. Worn enamel and resultant sensitivities may be worsened with a whitening procedure. The peroxide in the whitener can leach into the dentin of the tooth through the thinned enamel, causing pain.

Persons with gum sensitivity from gingivitis or periodontal disease should not have whitening procedures. Instead, the symptom of gum sensitivity should be addressed to promote oral health before a whitening procedure is introduced.