You want a bright and healthy smile so you can look back on all the happy moments you’ve catalogued by taking pictures without being self-conscious of your discolored grin. It can be overwhelming walking down the toothpaste aisle looking at all your teeth whitening options. With ingredients like coconut oil, charcoal, and baking soda, you want to pick the best option but you’re not sure what that is. Some seemingly natural options can help whiten your smile, but some can cause lasting damage. Read on to learn about 5 teeth whitening mistakes you’ll want to avoid.
Overusing Whitening Strips
When most people are looking for a quick way to brighten their smile, they’ll run to the store and grab some whitening strips. While these can get your teeth a bit whiter, there’s such thing as using them too often. If you leave them on your teeth for longer than instructed on the packaging, it puts you at risk for tooth sensitivity. Talking to your dentist before you commit to using certain whitening strips can help you avoid discomfort.
Using Baking Soda
You’ll notice countless blogs and oral hygiene products that have baking soda in them. Most of these products promise that they’ll remove surface stains and some spotting, but it may not be the best whitening option for your oral health. It won’t remove older stains on your teeth. Because it’s abrasive, it can also weaken your enamel and increase tooth sensitivity similar to overusing whitening strips.
Acid from Foods
Some blogs may recommend using acids from foods like lemons or apple cider vinegar. In fact, a popular teeth-whitening recipe you’ll find online is making a paste from lemon juice and baking soda. While these can help remove some surface stains, they have an erosive effect on your enamel and can put you at a higher risk for developing cavities. If you’re looking to get a whiter smile while also maintaining your oral health, skipping acidic fruits is your best option.
Whitening Trays That Don’t Fit Well
If you go to your dentist for at-home professional teeth whitening, they’ll create a custom-crafted tray, especially for your mouth. Having a tray that fits your mouth the way it should is very important. You may have thought you were saving time and money by buying a one-size-fits-all kit at your local store, but that’s not the case. These trays can commonly cause the gel to leak, which could irritate your gums and may not give you the whitening results you were expecting. Visiting your dentist for custom trays is an easy way to avoid any damage to your gums.
Using Products That Aren’t for Teeth
Using products that aren’t intended for your mouth are most likely unhealthy for your smile. If you’re unsure whether a product is safe to use in your mouth, it’s probably best that you do not use it at all. When you’re purchasing teeth whitening products from your store, be sure to keep an eye out for the ADA seal of approval or talk to your dentist. They may be able to suggest some products that are safe to use and will deliver results you’re looking for.
Keep in mind that the best way to get the results you want safely is to see your cosmetic dentist for a professional teeth whitening treatment. This procedure can be done in just a single visit so you won’t have to wonder whether it’s going to give you the smile you desire. Additionally, being looked after by a trained professional can help you avoid any damage to your oral health.
About the Author
Dr. Aly Elgeddawi has received extensive training in cosmetic dentistry, periodontal surgery, and endodontic therapy. He’s passionate about providing his patients with smiles that they’re proud to show off. One of his top priorities is making sure his patients are comfortable and feel cared for. For any questions or to schedule a professional teeth whitening, visit Mosaic Smiles’ website or contact 703-207-0700.