One of the most common complaints we hear from our patients is that their teeth just aren’t white enough. Stained teeth can occur for a variety of reasons, from a poor brushing routine to that daily coffee habit. Although you’ll get the whitest smile by visiting your dentist, you can help maintain that brightness at home by using a whitening toothpaste. But, which formulas should you buy, and how does it actually work? Below, we’ve listed 4 important things to know about whitening toothpaste, and how this simple product helps ensure your smile glows between appointments.
1. Look For The Seal
First, narrow your choices by seeking out toothpastes with the American Dental Association Seal of Acceptance. This means the product has been evaluated by the American Dental Association and truly delivers on its promise to whiten your teeth. Want a shortcut? You can find a list of these products at the ADA’s website.
2. Get Abrasive
All toothpastes contain abrasives such as silica that help lift away surface stains on the teeth, but whitening toothpaste contain added polishing agents for that really deep-clean. These extra particles also help the lightening agents work more effectively in breaking down and dissolving stains. But, since whitening toothpastes are generally more abrasive than regular toothpaste, be careful if you have sensitive teeth or if your enamel has worn down. The abrasiveness may cause more damage to your chompers, so check with your dentist to see if a whitening toothpaste is okay for you to use.
3. Lighten Up
The other important ingredient in whitening toothpaste is the chemical lightener. This is generally some form of peroxide, which helps lighten and dissolve stains. And, while a bleaching agent like peroxide might give some people pause, rest assured that the amounts used in toothpaste are safe and have been approved for daily use by the ADA, although those with delicate teeth may experience some mild sensitivity. Some whitening formulas also include an ingredient called blue covarine, which adheres to the teeth and counteracts any yellowness. Although this ingredient isn’t actually changing the color of your teeth, it can help create the appearance of a whiter smile while the other ingredients set to work lightening stains over a longer period of time.
4. Follow The Instructions
Remember, it can take four to six weeks of twice-daily use to see the whitening effects from toothpaste. While brushing more often or adding more product may sound like it could speed up the process, it can actually hurt both your enamel and your gums. So, stick to your regularly scheduled brushing routine and you’ll be all set.
We all love that extra white smile we get at the dentist’s office, and whitening toothpaste is an easy way to help maintain that brightness between visits. If you have any questions about whether whitening toothpaste will work for you, don’t hesitate to contact us here at DentaLux, or leave us a question in the comments below!