How to Whiten Your Teeth

 Azarko Marketing  Wednesday, January 14, 2015

If you're like most Canadians, you worry about your teeth’s appearance. External sources like coffee, tobacco, and overly acidic foods may stain your pearly whites. They also yellow because their mineral structure changes over time and becomes porous. But just because this is a natural process doesn’t mean it has to be permanent.

If you feel self-conscious about your teeth, take action. Contact Azarko Dental Group for teeth whitening in Edmonton.

In-Office Treatments

The fastest, most effective way to whiten your teeth is to take advantage of your dentist’s procedures. Treatments will vary from office to office, but one of the most promising options is Zoom!® whitening.

Dentists will prioritize your oral health while they brighten your smile, so you won’t need to worry. Before your dentist applies the Zoom!® gel, he or she will examine your mouth to make sure it's healthy enough for the procedure. This also ensures that you won’t feel any pain during the appointment.

Once your teeth and gums pass inspection, they receive the gel coating and sit under a light source for about 15 minutes. Whitening lamps will activate the gel and help it break down stains. Then, your Edmonton dentist will reevaluate your teeth and reapply gel. Most people will need three 15 minute sessions, so plan to spend about an hour in the office.

Over-the-Counter Options

In-office treatments show results more quickly than over-the-counter options or at-home remedies. However, each can brighten your smile over time. The following are a few of the most common and effective options.

Paint-On Gel

In-office treatments aren’t the only place you can get a gel overlay. Companies sell different versions in most stores; you can usually find them near the toothpaste and mouthwash.

Gels have a high hydrogen peroxide content that removes stains. Left on your teeth for a few minutes, the hydrogen peroxide will absorb into the tiny pours on your enamel and dentin. Once inside, it oxidizes and bleaches the unwanted color away.

You will need to paint traditional gel on your teeth and avoid touching the treated area with your tongue or lips. Dental trays can help protect the coating. But since over-the-counter models aren’t tailored to your mouth, gel might leak and irritate your gums.

Whitening Strips

Whitening strips use the same hydrogen peroxide reaction to bleach teeth, but users favour strips for their convenience. Just like the dental trays will, whitening strips provide a barrier so you can close your mouth without worrying that you will wash away the treatment.

Manufacturers simply place gel on thin, flexible plastic that you place over your front teeth. Leave it on only as long as the instructions describe. Some people believe extended time will make teeth even whiter, but it will simply make your teeth sensitive and gums uncomfortable.

Whitening Toothpaste

If you only have surface-level staining, whitening toothpaste may work for you. Ingredients will differ among companies, but the most effective pastes contain chemical like blue covarine and small abrasives. Blue covarine sticks to the enamel and gives the impression of a whiter smile while the abrasives polish teeth.

At-Home Remedies

If over-the-counter or in-office whitening options seem too extreme, you can still brighten your smile. Try one of these home remedies to get your sparkle back.

Strawberries and Baking Soda

When most people think about strawberries, they picture a tasty treat. However, dentists see them as an effective whitening agent. That’s because this fruit contains malic acid, which affects pH balances. The acid gives strawberries their tartness, but it also improves your smile. Combine with baking soda for the best results.

Mash one strawberry, and mix in 2 ml (0.5 teaspoons) of baking soda. Spread the mixture on your teeth with a soft toothbrush or your finger, and let it sit for about five minutes. Because the strawberry contains sugar, you will need to brush and rinse afterward. Repeat once every week until you reach the desired results.

Raw Fruits and Vegetables

When you bite into a crunchy apple or carrot, you get more than vitamins—you get a whitening treatment. The raw texture will scrub your teeth’s excess plaque and keep your smile white.

Coconut Oil Pulling

Coconut oil pulling is an alternative whitening treatment that gains popularity every day. While researchers haven’t published much on this teeth-cleaning supplement, many people sing its praises.

Users call this a “pulling” method because the coconut oil pulls microbes off your teeth, gums, tongue, and inner-cheeks. After you brush, place a spoonful of coconut in your mouth and swish it around for 10 – 20 minutes. Spit the excess oil into the sink, and enjoy a cleaner mouth. Over time, you may notice fresher breath and whiter teeth.

You have many teeth whitening choices, but consult your dentist at Azarko Dental Group before you start a regimen. Call your West Edmonton dentist today!