Some people are blessed with sparkling teeth. Despite caring very little for their teeth, they continue having those pearly whites. Your lifestyle decides the color of your teeth. It may sound confusing but genetics also decide that color. If you are in a pinch but still want to have a dazzling smile, whitening strips are all that you need.
Today, we are telling you what dentists have to say about these strips. Do they drill a hole in your pocket? Can just one use get the desired brightening? And more…
Let’s understand why do teeth get stained in the first place?
Your teeth can get stained internally. This is called intrinsic staining. Natural aging, fall or a blow to that tooth, and a few infections are the most likely reasons for this staining. A few medications and certain illnesses also discolor your tooth from within. It starts as a mild discoloration and progresses until you can see it outside.
Children having extra bright spots on their teeth also have a variant of this staining. Adults may rarely have. Overexposure to fluoride from drinking water and certain food products are responsible for such staining. If you are a big fan of colas, prepare to have some external stains on your teeth. It’s not just the tea or coffee that gives you badly colored teeth. Foods and drinks like red wine, beer, turmeric, and even cigarette smoking will cause your teeth to turn yellow.
An exception to this is red wine. This wine contains colored pigments called tannins. It can turn your teeth to a mild shade of purple. We advise you keep a straw handy while enjoying these drinks. This will ensure minimum contact of your teeth with strongly colored food.
Certain products can remove all the stains and give you that confident smile. Whitening products come in all forms right from DIY pastes to commercial toothpaste, mouthwashes, and trays to especially wear at night. But there’s another fantastic product out there that we have missed putting on this list.
Tooth whitening is a cosmetic procedure that gives you fabulous white teeth. It is generally done at the dentists’ office. It’s only natural for you to feel skeptical about this procedure as it is on the pricier side. Thankfully, some wonderful over-the-counter products can take away the yellowness and staining of your teeth. Your wish of getting the whitest shade of teeth can now be a reality.
If you are not familiar with whitening strips you may marvel at how miraculously they work. These are soft pliable strips that are stuck on a piece of plastic. A whitening kit will contain two strips to cover the top and the bottom front row of your teeth. The idea of these strips is to cover parts of your teeth that are visible after you smile. When you wish to use them just peel the clear off the plastic and stick them one by one on either row of the teeth. You want to do it by standing in front of the mirror to see the best possible fit. Try to keep the strip as far away as possible from the gums to avoid a slight stinging or burning sensation.
If you have already injured gums these strips can potentially cause swelling and more inflammation in them. If the height of the strip is more than the length of your teeth, fold it on the inner side. This would help to secure it tightly. It sure would make you talk funny and flood your mouth with extra saliva but in the end, it will all be worth it.
It takes about 30 minutes to get the best results of these strips. Some act as quickly as 15 minutes while some take an hour. But 30 minutes would be a decent time you would be spending with these strips. If that’s too much for you, do it at a time when you will be super busy for half an hour or so. Like, try putting on the strips before you drive off to your workplace, before your workout session, just while you get ready in the morning, or before hitting the bed at night. These strips are so clear that it is difficult for an onlooker to know that you are whitening your teeth and getting along with the grind of your day. It is that inconspicuous.
Now let’s face the truth that you can gain the best whitening results by a professional dental whitening procedure only.
But you can get great results with whitening strips provided you are consistent in their use. Most people get lazy and try the whitening strips a couple of times and forget about those. Irregularity will get you back to where you started from. The at-home whitening strips are mild and can be tolerated by people who have sensitive teeth. They have a lower concentration of strong ingredients and thus give a milder effect than clinical teeth whitening.
A few brands require you to manually peel off the strip after 30 minutes, while some strips dissolve on their own throughout that time. Do not reuse the peeled strips as they will just be sticky tapes with no chemicals to get a color change. These strips are smartly packed in individual pouches that can be slipped into your purse or your travel bag if you’re on the go. The great thing about over-the-counter whitening strips is that you can keep experimenting without spending a fortune. Try out a few commercial products and compare how you feel about each before you finalize your favorite brand.
Most whitening strips will require you to wear them for two weeks daily. Over some time, you will be able to see visible lightning in your tooth. The external stains will start vanishing. You can take a photo of your smile before you start using these strips. And compare it with a picture of your smile after 2 weeks. That would give you a feeling of accomplishment just like a trendy blogger. This whitening is subject to change if you indulge in colored foods and drinks. This is not a permanent whitening option for your teeth. If you wish to get permanent and long-standing results visiting a dentist for professional bleaching would be unavoidable.
How do these whitening strips work?
The magic of whitening happens because of an active ingredient called hydrogen peroxide. It may or may not coupled with carbamide peroxide to get excellent results. These chemicals act on the outermost surface of your tooth called the enamel. A few powerful strips reach the second layer of the tooth that is the dentin and remove even the deeper stains on your tooth. The peroxide will leave most people with sensitivity which reduces over time.
What to watch out for?
The outermost layer of your tooth is delicate, and cannot slap with harsh chemicals regularly. Always read the list of ingredients on the packaging of whitening strips. If you see a mention of chlorine dioxide, consider choosing a different brand. This is a harsh chemical and can oxidize the enamel of your tooth. It leaves your enamel eroded and very brittle.
If you are under the impression that the longer you keep these strips on your teeth brighter will be the result then you are wrong. You will just be making your tooth weak by keeping the strips for an extended period. Tooth sensitivity along with irritation to soft gums is not uncommon with such mishaps. It can even increase the roughness or softness of your tooth.
Talk to your dentist before you attempt using these strips if you have fillings or braces on your teeth. It can make them pop out prematurely. These whitening strips are only for adult use. Using them for children is not indicated as their teeth are extremely delicate. Even tiny amounts of mild chemicals are enough to cause a truckload of damage. If you see a change in the color of your child’s teeth, do visit a pediatric dentist.