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What is Teeth Whitening Gel?

More and more people are using at home systems to whiten their teeth.
Teeth whitening gel.
Whitening gel is used by people attempting to brighten their smiles.
Teeth whitening gel may be applied to a wearable mouth guard as part of an at-home whitening treatment.
Gel results will vary depending on how much of the product is used, and for how long.
Article Details
  • Written By: M Wilkinson
  • Edited By: Lindsay D.
  • Last Modified Date: 13 August 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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Everybody would like to have perfect white teeth, but many cannot afford to spend a fortune on the teeth whitening procedures offered to them by their dentists. Home teeth whitening systems are increasingly looked upon as a cheaper way of achieving the perfect white smile. This includes the use of teeth whitening gel, which can be applied by an individual at home or by a dentist.

The main difference between the teeth whitening gel offered by the dentist and the whitening products that can be used at home is the chemical composition of the bleaching materials on offer, and consequently the time required for the teeth whitening products to take effect. Generally, the teeth whitening gel used by dentists tends to be stronger than the bleaching gel on sale in shops.

Teeth become duller over time and can become stained as a result of the consumption of certain food and drink products such as wine. Teeth whitening gel is designed to help combat intrinsic stains. This means that even stains that have penetrated deep into the enamel of a tooth will be removed through the use of teeth whitening gel.

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The results of using teeth whitening gel will vary according to how much of a product is used and for how long. A dentist uses a high concentration of oxidizing agent in order to maximize the teeth whitening treatment within as short a space of time as possible. The bleaching agent used is either carbamide peroxide, which becomes hydrogen peroxide in the mouth, or hydrogen peroxide itself. When carbamide peroxide breaks down, it creates water and oxygen, which facilitates stain removal through the oxidization of stains.

Using teeth whitening gel at home will mean the results will take longer to appear, as the concentration of the active bleaching agent is generally lower. A mouthguard, to which the whitening gel can be applied, is put into the mouth, over the teeth, in order to expose the teeth to the oxidizing agent. This is similar to the process that happens at the dentist, but the mouthguard is not specifically molded to a person’s mouth, and so may not be as effective. It can also take a number of weeks to have a noticeable effect, depending on the product used and the number of hours it is worn, which can be up to four hours a day.

The overall whitening results produced by the use of teeth whitening gel can vary greatly according to the product and the length of time it is used. However, overall home teeth whitening products are cheaper than visiting a dentist and, due to the lower concentration of the bleaching agent, there is less risk of causing teeth to become sensitive, which may go some way to explain why home teeth whitening products have become so popular.

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