There is no shortage of teeth whitening systems and products available at your local drugstore. But just how well do these whitening toothpastes, strips, rinses, and gels work? Can you get decent results from teeth whitening products that are not purchased from your Elk Grove Village dentist?
Let’s take a look at what you might expect.
All toothpastes contain mild abrasives, so any type you use will help in removing surface stains. Those that are specifically designed for whitening usually include additional ingredients to assist in stain removal, but none contain bleach or the carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide found in professional whitening products. Using a whitening toothpaste regularly will likely whiten your teeth by about a shade or so.
Whitening Strips and Gels
Both of these products generally contain a small amount of peroxide, so they will lighten your teeth after you use them for a few days. Depending on your lifestyle choices, such as what you eat and drink and whether you are a tobacco user, results can last for up to a few months.
Among the newer whitening products that are available over-the-counter are whitening rinses. They are swished around the mouth, just as you would use mouthwash. Like mouthwash, they will help freshen your breath and help in reducing plaque on your teeth. Because the rinse is in contact with the surface of your teeth for a very short amount of time—usually 30 seconds—it takes a long time to see any results. You may have to use this product for several months before your teeth appear to be any whiter.
Over-the-Counter Versus Professional Teeth Whitening
The bottom line is that you will get some results by using drugstore whitening products, but nothing will give you the dramatic results that professional teeth whitening will. In as little as an hour in the dentist chair, you can have teeth that are several shades whiter and brighter.