So your teeth are a little discolored or stained, and you are looking into some possible solutions to get your teeth back to their original color.
If you landed here, you are looking to whiten your teeth at home, and more than likely teeth whitening strips is one of the solutions you are looking to use to get the job done, but you need to know if they are safe to use.
Good job on your part for doing your research and not just throwing anything that could contain harmful chemicals into your mouth!
When it comes to teeth whitening, strips are the most popular choice, but you do need to be careful when choosing which strips to use.
Is it Safe to Use Teeth Whitening Strips?
In MOST cases, yes it is safe to use them. However, there are some strips that do contain chemicals that are a little harsher than others. For example, some strips use chlorine dioxide, which you should stay away from.
Chlorine dioxide has the potential to ruin the enamel that is on your teeth, leaving you in a much worse situation than you were before. Essentially this chemical whitens your teeth by literally eating away at your stained enamel. This obviously is not good, and over time, once your enamel becomes more and more worn down, tooth decay will set it and it is over….
On the other hand, a vast majority of teeth whitening strips use peroxide or bleach. While this might not be the safest way to whiten your teeth, it is much better than using strips that contain chlorine dioxide.
The peroxide or bleach will essentially bleach and whiten the enamel on your teeth, removing years of stains, yellow tinting, and any other discoloration.
How to use Teeth Whitening Strips
The best practice is to following the instructions that come with the strips. Most come with 10-20 treatments that you are to use daily for 15-25 minutes.
There is usually 2 strips in one treatment. One for the upper row of teeth and one for the bottom row of teeth.
You need to make sure you get a reputable brand of these strips so that they stick to your teeth and do not move around or fall off at all during the entire treatment. The best brand for this is Crest.
Once you have completed all of the treatments, you should notice a difference in the color of your teeth.
How soon Should I See Results?
This depends …. some people report seeing results after just 1 or 2 treatments, while others do not see results until after 7-10 treatments. However, in most cases, almost everyone notices a pretty big difference.
This comes down to the severity of your stains, how long your teeth have been stained, and how well your enamel reacts to the bleaching agent.
The length that the results lasts also varies. Some people have longer lasting results, while some who might be heavy coffee, tea, and wine drinkers may have to treat their teeth every few months.
On average, you will probably want to whiten your teeth 2-3 times per year while using strips.
What are the Benefits of using Teeth Whitening Strips as Opposed to Other Methods?
Using teeth whitening strips over other methods has several advantages.
Here is a list of some of the benefits:
Much cheaper than getting your teeth professionally whitened in a DR office.
You can buy then over the counter at your local pharmacy without a prescription.
They tend to work pretty fast.
They are safer than other forms of whitening.
The results are usually pretty professional looking.
They are quick and very easy to use.
You do not need to leave them on for long periods of time or over night as with some teeth whitening kits.
There are just a few of the major benefits of choosing teeth whitening strips over other whitening methods.
Things to Look Out for When Using Teeth Whitening Strips
Nothing comes without some drawbacks, and the same goes for whitening strips.
In most cases, these strips will cause sensitivity to your teeth, however you might be one of the lucky few that does not get affected by this.
The sensitivity can last from 30 minutes up to a day, but in most cases this goes away after an hour or two.
You also want to make sure that you are getting strips that stay in place as mentioned before. There are plenty of strips that slide all over the place and fall off, which means you are not getting the full treatment and wasting money.
Check out my review of the best teeth whitening strips here.
You should also watch out for any whitening products that guarantee results in one day or anything else that seems absurd. The truth is, everyone is different and results can vary greatly.
Other Forms of Teeth Whitening to Consider
Other than whitening strips, there are other methods to whiten your teeth which can be less expensive and safe in most cases.
For example, DIY teeth whitening is becoming more popular and is the process of making your own homemade natural teeth whitening recipes using ingredients that are completely safe. This method takes a little bit of work, but will save you a ton of money.
There are also tons of at home teeth whitening kits on the market. This can be hit or miss, and you need to do your research before purchasing one of these so that you do not get a knock off or a kit that does not produce results. Learn more about teeth whitening kits here.
Another option is to get your teeth professionally whitening by your dentist. This usually comes with a pretty heft cost, but probably provides the best results.
As you can see, there are many options and choices for getting your teeth whiter. Some methods work faster than others, some methods cost more than others, some provide longer lasting results, and some are safer than others.
Whichever method you choose, be sure to do your research before hand, and if you are unsure about anything consult with your local dentist.