Teeth whitening is a growing trend in our society, and for good reason. Visibly whiter teeth can transform your entire appearance, increase your self-confidence and improve your quality of life. There are many do-it-yourself tutorials and over-the-counter products to choose from, as well as professional whitening options. But many whitening procedures are costly and can have adverse side-effects. How can you know which procedures are safe and cost-effective?
Many people have turned to homemade remedies for teeth whitening. While this option is often more cost-effective, it is usually not reliable and unsafe. Many of these remedies include the use of lemon juice or different types of fruit. The acidic nature of fruit causes immediate damage to teeth and causes them to lose calcium. Many dentists often deal with patients who have damaged their teeth and gums from excessive use of lemon juice as a whitener. The use of baking soda is another common remedy for teeth whitening. Baking soda does not whiten teeth, but has abrasive properties that can damage the enamel and weaken the teeth. Other remedies also have the same characteristics as baking soda, and should be avoided or discussed with a dentist.
Home remedies usually lack proper procedures or safety protocols, making them a poor choice for teeth whitening. In addition, your teeth are not evaluated for their health prior to treatment, making the risks or possible reactions unknown. Over-the-counter products are usually safe to use, but without a prior teeth examination to determine the health and any disease or problems with teeth, over-the-counter products can also cause more harm than good.
For the best, most cost-effective results, it is best to first consult with a dentist. Only dentists can knowledgably evaluate the health condition of your teeth and advise you with the safest plan. In addition, the products used by dentists have been tested and proven safe to use, and the side-effects are known. Although professional whitening may cost a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars for the more extensive treatments, you will likely get faster, more dramatic results that last longer than OTC or homemade methods. In the end, professional treatment may be comparable in price to other methods, but offer longer-lasting and better quality results.