Is Teeth Whitening Right for You?

Society places a huge value on pearly white smiles—I know because whitening is one of the top concerns of my patients. When it comes to enhancing your smile to look like a million bucks, it’s important to take the time to consider the best method and products for yourself. There are many effective at-home treatments that can bleach your teeth, but if you have any concerns or questions, you should always consider asking your own dentist first! Whether you go with natural or chemical whitening products, there is a way to give you the smile you deserve—safely.

What kind of staining do you have?

First, determine what type of staining you have—extrinsic or intrinsic? Mild, extrinsic staining occurs through eating and drinking everyday foods like red wine, tea, and coffee. These stains happen on the surface of the enamel. If this is your situation, you’re a candidate for a natural approach to bleachings—such as our RiseWell Natural Hydroxyapatite Toothpaste or even making a simple paste with baking soda and water.

Intrinsic staining, in contact, can occur because you were born with darker teeth or you took an antibiotic as a child that was prone to discolor teeth as a side effect. Because these stains affect the inner layer of teeth, getting rid of them requires a chemical approach. There are two options available: hydrogen peroxide-based whiteners or carbamide peroxide-based whiteners. Both options can be effective and safe when used appropriately—so it’s important to read the directions thoroughly. You don’t want to swallow or get chemical whiteners on the skin or near the eyes. Results-wise, they work equally well. The main difference is that carbamide peroxide contains urea and can work actively for up to eight hours, while hydrogen peroxide releases most of its bleaching power within an hour. It is normal for your teeth to feel sensitive after using a chemical whitener, but you should see a dentist if it lasts more than 24 hours (and definitely don’t use the product for any longer than the directions allow!).

If you have concerns…

All chemical whiteners impair fibroblasts, which are cells found in connective tissue that are essential to wound healing. If you’ve recently had mouth surgery or any work done to gums or soft tissue, you should not use chemical whiteners, as they can impair healing to your soft tissue. If you have any concerns and want to stay on the safe side, it’s best to use a natural whitener for the time being!

About Dr. Derek

He is not only Co-Founder of RiseWell. Dr. Derek Gatta is a partner at Dr Max & Dr Gatta PLLC in Boca Raton, Florida. If you are in the area, he is your go-to dentist!