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Are At-Home Teeth Whitening Trays Safe?

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Are At-Home Teeth Whitening Trays Safe?

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If you want pearly white teeth, you might do anything to get them, and that includes ordering at-home teeth whitening trays online. Are these safe for your teeth? Some have been proven to move your bite along with them. Whether or not you have had orthodontic work done, here’s why you shouldn’t buy at-home whitening trays without talking with your dentist.

What Stains Teeth?

Teeth can gradually get more dull and yellow over time due to the foods we eat and the beverages we consume. However, there are often more contributing factors that can play a role in someone’s teeth yellowing. Teeth stains can be caused by:

  • Foods and drinks, like red wine and coffee
  • Tobacco, cigarettes and tobacco are known to discolor teeth 
  • Poor hygiene, lack of quality brushing and flossing can cause tooth discoloration
  • Disease or injury, sometimes illnesses or injury can attack the enamel and discolor teeth
  • Medicine and treatments, like chemotherapy can stain teeth

Types of Stains

Not all stains are created equal, and there are a few different types of stains that could be on your teeth. There are three teeth stains. Those are known as extrinsic, intrinsic, and age-related teeth stains. 

  • Extrinsic teeth stains: this type of staining is a surface stain. It happens from food and drink and build-up in the film of protein that covers the tooth enamel. However, extrinsic stains can also happen due to drinking coffee or wine each day or using tobacco. Extrinsic teeth stains respond well to dental cleanings and using surface whitening products, like whitening toothpaste. 
  • Intrinsic teeth stains: this type of stain is below the surface of the tooth. This happens when stain-causing particles work through the exterior of the tooth and accumulate within the tooth enamel. The use of excessive fluoride in children and adults can contribute to this type of stain. These stains are trickier to remove, however, getting professional whitening done can usually help. 
  • Age-related teeth stains: age-related stains combine the results of both intrinsic and extrinsic tooth stains. The core of your teeth, the dentin, naturally turns yellow over time. When we grow older, our enamel becomes thinner which allows the dentin to show through. These stains cause most adults to have teeth staining with age. 

Over-the-Counter Whitening Options

There are a couple of different teeth whitening options available to you over the counter. You can use teeth whitening toothpastes, mouthwashes, or opt to use whitening strips. 

Whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes tend to not do much. In this case, toothpastes tend to do about the same across the board. White strips available over-the-counter can do more, however, they are messy and difficult to use, and don’t do much for the teeth in the back of your mouth.

Are whitening options over-the-counter safe? They’re safe in moderation. Over-the-counter options are made using weaker formulas than you’d find at your dentist’s office, and can often only be used for a short period of time because they could be dangerous to ingest. Having your teeth whitened by a professional is the best way to get the most noticeable results in the safest way. 

Zoom Teeth Whitening

At Mountain Aire Dentistry, we use Zoom teeth whitening in our office. This quick and professional in-office whitening treatment can brighten your smile up to 8 shades after just one treatment. This can help you achieve a whiter, more bright and beautiful smile. 

Regardless of the cause, staining and discoloration in your teeth can make you feel embarrassed of your smile’s appearance. This could result in you not smiling with your teeth in pictures and always trying to hide from the camera. If this is you, our dentist may recommend our Zoom teeth whitening treatment. Zoom in-office whitening is a safe and simple process that uses advanced and effective methods to leave you with beautiful, long-lasting results. In most cases, this treatment takes about one hour. If you come in for this appointment, here is what your appointment will look like. We will: 

  • Clean your teeth
  • Cover your lips and gums to protect them from exposure to the whitening material
  • Apply a hydrogen peroxide gel to your teeth, and leave it there for 15 minutes
  • Shine the Zoom LED lights over your teeth to activate the hydrogen peroxide, which will penetrate the tooth’s surface and dissolve discoloration and stains.
  • Repeat the process of applying the whitening gel and shining the LED lights an additional 2 times

After you have completed your three 15-minute whitening sessions, you will walk out of our office with a brighter, more confident smile. We will also give you instructions about how to care for your whiter smile at home, as well as a touch-up kit that will help your smile last longer.

To learn more about Zoom teeth whitening, we invite you to call or visit us today. We look forward to helping you achieve your picture-perfect smile!