We all want a whiter, brighter smile … but are teeth whitening strips the best way to go?
Well, keep reading because we’ve stripped down fact from fiction to give you the real deal on teeth whitening strips.
Check out Teeth Whitening Strips: Pros & Cons to see if they’re the right choice for your beautiful smile.
The Pros of Teeth Whitening Strips
People who use teeth whitening strips usually see a noticeable difference in color within 7 days. How long will the results last? Usually 6–18 months, which is a pretty long time to rock a more dazzling smile.
Whitening strips are a relatively safe and effective way to lighten yellow teeth by an entire shade. Having whiter teeth is shown to make people feel more confident, attractive and even friendlier!
Good-to-Know Info: Teeth whitening is not effective on veneers, fillings, crowns, caps or teeth that are stained brown.
We’d all love a blinding-white smile à la Regis Philbin, but let’s be honest: not many of us can afford professional teeth whitening, which ranges in cost from $100–$650. Teeth whitening strips are an inexpensive alternative that everyone can afford, with costs ranging from $10–$45.
The Cons of Teeth Whitening Strips
It’s hard to break the attitude of “more is better.” (Why have 1 piece of chocolate when we can have 5?) But when it comes to at-home teeth whitening, this can really get our teeth in trouble.
Think about what would happen to the health of your hair with over-bleaching. It would either be severely damaged, or you’d have none left! Now, we’re not suggesting that you’ll lose your teeth if you bleach too much, but you could severely weaken your enamel.
Weak enamel from overbleaching can make your teeth look translucent, blue or even grey. It also sets the stage for tooth decay. Enamel cannot grow back, so if you decide to use teeth whitening strips, only use them as often as the package recommends!
Troubles with Tooth Sensitivity
In a tooth sensitivity study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association, researchers found that 50 percent of adults who used an at-home teeth whitening system had mild tooth sensitivity, 10 percent had moderate tooth sensitivity, and 4 percent had severe tooth sensitivity post-treatment, with symptoms lasting 1–3 weeks.
If you do use whitening strips on a regular basis, be sure to brush with a gentle, low abrasion toothpaste that’s specially formulated to protect sensitive teeth and gums.
7 Secrets for Dealing with Tooth Sensitivity
1. Use a low-abrasion toothpaste. They’re super-gentle on your enamel and gums.
2. Use an ultra-soft-bristled toothbrush and don’t brush too vigorously. If your bristles are pointing every which way, that’s a sign you’re brushing too hard!
3. Go easy on acidic drinks. We’re talking soda, coffee and citrus juices.
4. No ice please! Chewing on ice cubes can be a huge trigger for those with sensitive teeth.
5. Avoid hard, sticky candies. These tempting treats can stimulate the nerves in your dentin, causing some major ouch.
6. Wear a mouthguard at night if you’re a tooth grinder.
Ouch, That Burns!
Over-the-counter teeth whitening strips are coated with a gel that’s usually made of hydrogen peroxide. Most have a solution of around 10 percent hydrogen peroxide, with Crest Whitestrips Supreme Flex-Fit topping the scale at 14 percent.
Often, this can make the gums feel like they’re burning (not fun)! In fact, there have even been product recalls because of it!
For relief from ouch-inducing mouth irritations, whether from burns, sensitivity or mouth sores, try this dentist-recommended Pro Relief Dental Gel for soothing relief.
What Are Some Other Ways to Whiten Teeth? If you decide that the cons of teeth whitening strips outweigh the pros, there are many alternatives to give you a brighter smile. Check out 5 Secrets to a White Smile.
What do you think? Are you a “pro” or a “con”? Comment below and tell us!