“People have seen a dramatic increase in cases related to teeth whitening in the 21st century. A study says, nearly 90 per cent of patients with misaligned teeth also requested teeth whitening in the past decade. With growing social media and obsession around facial attractiveness, there is a growing concern in people across the world about their teeth colour,” said Dr Mohendar Narula, founder, MyDentalPlan
The expert added that the occurrence of stains and discolouration in teeth can be attributed to an increase in prolonged smoking habits, tobacco and alcohol consumption, unhealthy food habits, and higher fluoride concentrations in community water supplies. In teeth whitening, the colour of the teeth is lightened using only chemicals (bleach, hydrogen peroxide) or in combination with radiation (UV light or lasers) with minimal harm to the enamel and the gums. Before the procedure, thorough teeth cleaning and polishing is recommended to remove plaque and debris from the enamel, and bleach to smooth the teeth surface for a better outcome.
Some of the ways to achieve clean, white teeth are
Avoid food staining products. Intrinsic stains caused due to excess fluoride can be treated by combining teeth whitening with veneers (a layer of composites on teeth). Avoid drinking too much tea, coffee, red wine, or even fruits that can cause teeth staining. However, they can be completely treated with whitening procedures alone.
The most professional way for teeth whitening can be witnessed by bleaching in the dental clinic. In this, the dentist applies whitening gel on the teeth surface followed by using a special light or laser that lightens the teeth by 6-8 shades. Generally divided into multiple visits, a dental expert provides the best results keeping the gums and enamel intact.
Another way of attaining whiter teeth is at-home bleaching. For this, the dentist fabricates customised dental trays that the patient wears at home after applying the whitening gel for a prescribed duration that lightens the teeth by 3-4 shades.
Switch to whitening toothpaste. Regular toothpaste has at least 1450 ppm Fluoride, but whitening toothpaste also has another important ingredient that is responsible for whitening – hydrogen peroxide. In whitening toothpaste, it’s at a much lower (and relatively safer) concentration. Use this whitening toothpaste twice a day for better results.
On the flip side, over and misuse of whitening products can harm the gums and erode teeth enamel. On that account, any teeth whitening agent must be used only after consulting a dentist.
When carried out holistically, teeth whitening treatment works like magic in boosting people’s self-esteem along with ensuring a healthier mouth. Watching what you eat, good oral hygiene practices, and regular professional dental cleanings every six months can preserve a long-lasting smile.