At WiseGEEK, we're committed to delivering accurate, trustworthy information. Our expert-authored content is rigorously fact-checked and sourced from credible authorities. Discover how we uphold the highest standards in providing you with reliable knowledge.
The best tips for do it yourself (DIY) teeth whitening are to forgo teeth whitening toothpastes, opt for long treatments for sensitive teeth, and never overuse a whitening product. Many people report that regular toothpastes work just as well as whitening ones if used properly. In addition, people can save themselves a few hours of pain by opting for long treatments, such as ones that take more than two weeks to complete, instead of shorter, three day treatments. Also, researchers have observed addictiveness to DIY teeth whitening treatments, but using the treatments too often can have major consequences. Lastly, it is also important to know the peroxide content of the whitening product.
Most people do not see a difference between whitening toothpastes and regular toothpastes. In fact, whitening toothpastes can be more expensive and make a person’s teeth sensitive. It is generally recommended that people save their money and brush well with regular toothpaste, since the results are typically not dramatically different. The money saved can be put toward a more effective DIY teeth whitening treatment, like products that can be purchased at a dentist’s office or drug stores.
People who have sensitive teeth should lean toward DIY teeth whitening products that take one to three weeks to complete. The products that promise results in under a week, or worse, instant results, are more likely to bother their teeth. These teeth whitening products have a higher concentration of the bleaching agent. The products that take longer to bleach have a lower concentration that is applied over time rather than all at once.
Having light yellow teeth is not always a sign of poor oral hygiene. The color of a person’s teeth depends a lot on genetics, and some people naturally have yellow-tinted pearly whites. Using too many DIY teeth whitening treatments can be harmful to stubbornly yellow teeth. In fact, some people have accidentally turned their teeth transparent because of teeth whitening product overuse.
The effectiveness of DIY teeth whitening treatments depends on its peroxide content. Treatments available in drug stores usually contain about 10 percent peroxide. On the other hand, professional treatments typically contain more than 40 percent, which is why the general consensus is that a bleaching performed at the dentist if more effective than one performed at home. People who have sensitive teeth might be best off opting for a more diluted treatment that is applied over time.