5 Myths About Teeth Whitening

5 Myths About Teeth Whitening

Feb 07, 2019

Each toothpaste commercial claims that their product does the best job at whitening teeth. However, how much do you know about teeth whiteners? What is the difference between Arlington Dental Associates dental office whiteners and store-bought ones?

Myth 1: All Whiteners are the Same

This is one of the biggest myths of them all. You cannot get the same results from a store-bought kit as you would at the dentist. The active ingredient may be the same, hydrogen or carbamide peroxide, but the concentration is vastly different. Dentists use peroxide that is prescription strength, so it will be safer on teeth and more effective.

Myth 2: Whitening Damages Your Teeth

Whitening will not damage teeth if it is done properly. Using store-bought whiteners for several years can damage teeth by breaking down the enamel. With whitening treatments, your teeth get instant results and do not receive additional peroxide that can cause damage to the enamel. They can recover naturally between whitening treatments so that no harm is done.

Myth 3: Whitening Toothpastes are the Same as Whitening Treatments

Whitening toothpastes are not effective because they are not left on teeth for the same duration of time as peroxide would be in the dentist’s office. Even if the toothpaste were left on teeth, the active ingredient is likely not concentrated enough to make much of a difference.

Myth 4: All Stains are Caused by Pigments in Foods and Beverages

Discoloration is caused frequently by food, liquids, and tobacco, but these are only extrinsic. Teeth can also develop intrinsic stains, stains below the enamel, in various ways that lead to yellowing teeth. Not all whitening treatments remove intrinsic stains, but some treatments have been effective.

Myth 5: Whitening Treatments are Painful

It is very true that sensitivity increases temporarily after a whitening treatment. However, most people complaining about a burning sensation are likely using at-home kits with poor quality. The strips that are commonly used let peroxide come in contact with the gums and cause irritation. This would not occur with a dental whitening treatment.