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El Portal Dental Blog


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DIY Teeth Whitening: More Harm than Actual Results

There is no objection that whiter teeth can make you look younger and give you the bright smile everyone wants. With so many products on the market and do-it-yourself recipes, getting exactly what you want seems to be a lot easier. So much so that the majority of people forgo going to the dentist to whiten their teeth and rely solely on these recipes and products. However, the fact of the of the matter is that these recipes and products may actually be doing more harm than good.

Whitening Mouthwash and Toothpaste

Crest, Colgate, and many other brands have made a fortune selling you on the idea that whitening your teeth could be as easy as brushing them. Using the same products, you were used to using before, with some extra ingredients, could provide the same results. However, what most people don’t understand is that these products have a high level of alcohol. The alcohol level could actually harm your gums and internal organs over time. In addition, the content of the active ingredients is simply not strong enough to really achieve the pearly white look we all seek. Making the results lesser than the negative impacts of these products.

Whitening Strips

Strips are the second most popular at-home teeth-whitening products, as the active ingredients are high and some are extremely effective. However, it is imperative to use them correctly. Many people simply overuse the strips, using them year-round and leaving them on for longer than the directed amount of time. It is important to note that strips should only be used for a maximum of twice every year, and only for the amount of time allowed. Overdoing the strip could increase teeth sensitivity and cause undesirable splotching in the teeth.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Many swear by the hydrogen peroxide method. Hydrogen peroxide works by releasing free radicals in the mouth and can actually age the gums and bones. So while an effect to decrease yellowing will take place, the long term result is actually not desirable. The problem is that most people do not know what the proper dosage is to balance the risk and results. Improper usage can actually irritate the gum and worsen teeth condition over time.

Lemon Juice and Baking Soda

This method seems to be one of the most popular ones online, as it is one of the only DIY methods that actually works. But, it is important to note that while baking soda could have a positive effect on your mouth, it actually does very little for teeth whitening. Baking soda is supposed to eliminate bacteria (that could cause yellowing) and have an exfoliating effect on the teeth (decreasing the amount of surface stains). On the other hand, baking soda can actually limit the amount of good bacteria in the mouth that is necessary for proper oral health.

The active ingredient in this method is actually the lemon juice, because of its acidic properties, it helps break down stains in the teeth. However, it is very acidic and because of this over time it can actually erode the enamel. Any issues with the enamel is actually a permanent problem, as the enamel cannot be recreated. Therefore, this method can actually leave permanent damage in the teeth. Making this method one of the most dangerous ones.

Visiting Your Dentist

The only way to ensure you are getting best results, while maintaining the highest quality of ingredients is to actually visit your dentist. At El Portal Dental, we are here to help you get the bright smile you’ve been wanting. Call us today at (209)385-1479 to schedule your appointment!