Teeth whitening is an increasingly common procedure for improving the cosmetic appearance of your teeth and reducing bad breath. As a cheaper cosmetic dental procedure that achieves excellent results, many people ask, “Is teeth whitening safe?”
At Boon Dental, we take pride in only using the highest quality products that support your dental and gum health while still achieving great whitening results. So, is teeth whitening safe? The short answer is yes if done by professionals.
According to a 2020 survey conducted by the Australian Dental Association, 64% of respondents who had undergone a dental whitening treatment were unaware of the risks of dental whitening carried out by non-dentists. We hope to remedy this statistic by covering everything you need to know below.
Types of Teeth Whitening
At Boon Dental, we offer our patients two types of teeth whitening: In-chair whitening and take-home whitening kits.
- In-chair whitening
In-chair whitening is the safest and most effective teeth whitening treatment available for getting whiter, cleaner teeth. The in-chair whitening procedure starts with a brief examination of your teeth and dental health to ensure a whitening procedure is an effective option for you.
Once we are sure whitening is an appropriate option, we insert a guard that protects your gums from the bleaching gel before applying the agent to your teeth. We use ultraviolet light to activate the whitening agent, and then we remove the gel from your teeth before you rinse.
- Take-home whitening kits
We also provide patients with take-home kits that we have especially chosen based on their quality ingredients. Take-home kits are great for taking care of minor stains and between whitening visits. However, they are not as thorough as in-chair whitening procedures. We first make a custom mouth tray that matches the shape of your teeth, which you then put the whitening agent into and fit to your teeth.
We can provide different whitening agents for different time frames. Some only need 15 minutes of daily application, while you can leave in others overnight while you sleep. You can speak with our team to determine which one best fits your schedule.
How Safe Is Teeth Whitening?
Dental whitening is a safe option if you successfully pass the initial examination and have no existing dental health problems that need to be taken care of first.
Studies on the effects and safety of teeth whitening have revealed that teeth whitening is indeed a safe procedure provided that the manufacturer’s protocols are correctly followed. Because most teeth-whitening agents contain either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide, the specific concentrations of these chemicals and whether they are used correctly will determine how safe a whitening procedure is.
When the agent is misapplied, such as for extended periods, to the gums, or with too high of a concentration, people may then experience adverse effects. These can include tooth erosion, mineral degradation, and damage to the tooth’s pulp.
For these reasons, it is crucial that you choose a professional for your teeth whitening procedure instead of relying on over-the-counter options and treatments from non-dentists.
Australian law and the Dental Board of Australia regulate dental whitening agents such as hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide. Regulation ensures that all dental whitening products contain the regulated amounts of bleaching chemicals and do not include any additional ingredients harmful to users.
Monitored by Dental Professionals
According to Australian law, only certified dentists can administer teeth whitening agents that have concentrations of more than 6% hydrogen peroxide and 18% carbamide peroxide. Dentists only administer these higher concentrations during in-chair whitening treatments, so any take-home treatments in Australia will have lower concentrations of the active bleaching ingredients to help prevent unsupervised dental damage. Our experience as qualified dentists in applying higher bleaching concentrations is why in-chair treatments are more effective than take-home options.
Teeth Whitening Treatment After Care
Teeth whitening results are not permanent. Some habits can stain your teeth, so it is important to follow a routine that maintains whitening results, such as:
- Avoiding dark foods and beverages, such as red wine and coffee
- Avoiding smoking or chewing tobacco so nicotine stains do not accumulate
- Brushing and flossing your teeth twice daily using a soft-bristled brush
- Rinsing with mouthwash once a day
- Booking regular cleanings and general check-ups with your dentist
Specially Formulated Bleaching Agents
At Boon Dental, we use specially formulated whitening agents that remove superficial dental stains and deeper stains that have penetrated your teeth due to enamel erosion. The gels that we use also offer remineralisation that helps restore your teeth’ health, so your teeth get more than just a simple whitening.
Side Effects of Teeth Whitening
Teeth whitening is completely safe when taken care of by your dentist, but it is helpful to know about some minor side effects. These are typical experiences after treatment and are not permanent. However, you may experience some tooth sensitivity and irritation to your gums.
These are natural components of the whitening process, and they will disappear after a few days.
Is teeth whitening safe? Yes, teeth whitening is a safe procedure to improve your teeth’ cosmetic appearance and remove unsightly stains. Negative outcomes for teeth whitening occur when the manufacturer’s protocols and instructions are not followed correctly. That is why under Australian law, only qualified dentists can administer whitening agents with higher bleaching chemical concentrations.
Choosing a qualified dentist for your next tooth whitening means you will have better results and a much more comfortable experience compared with over-the-counter options. If you are ready to improve your smile by removing dental stains, contact our Boon Dental team here. You can also follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest dental advice and information.