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Teeth whitening is a popular dental treatment but many want to know if it can be done at home? Hydrogen peroxide is a common product in most homes medicine cabinets as well as first aid kits. It has a range of uses. Hydrogen peroxide is also an active ingredient in many teeth whitening treatments. This has lead many people to wonder whether store bought hydrogen peroxide can work as a tooth whitener as well. While hydrogen peroxide may help whiten the teeth in certain situations it does not come without risks. There are some important safety issues to consider before using this product outside its intended form. Incorrectly used hydrogen peroxide can cause damage to the enamel of the teeth.

Effective For Teeth Whitening?

Hydrogen peroxide is a very common and highly effective active ingredient in many dental teeth whitening applications. Dental products containing peroxides (hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide) act as bleaching agents to change the color of the teeth to lighter shades. Peroxide when used properly can partially penetrate the layers of the teeth, removing compounds that cause discoloration leaving teeth whiter than before.

Hydrogen peroxide can come in various concentrations depending on the product. Store bought teeth whitening kits generally are below 10% while kits purchased thru your dentist can be as high as 40%.

Many people assume that higher concentrations of peroxide may lead to more side effects (tooth sensitivity and enamel breakdown) but this is not always the case. However, it does appear that the length of time that these products are applied on the teeth is vitally important.

Studies as recently as 2016 have shown that lower concentration gels had more negative effects when left on teeth for longer period of times. Higher concentration gels require less application time which can reduce enamel damage and tooth sensitivity. A study in the American Journal of Dentistry found that a commercial mouthwash containing only 1.5% hydrogen peroxide caused a noticeable lightening in human tooth enamel after just four (4) weeks.

People who already have sensitive teeth may want to speak with their dentist before using hydrogen peroxide to whiten the teeth.

Risks?

There are some common risks to consider prior to using hydrogen peroxide for teeth whitening.

Most common side effects of teeth whitening include tooth and gum sensitivity, as well as irritated or inflamed gums. If you experiences these symptoms during teeth whitening treatment should stop using the product and contact your dentist to discuss other options that mat be gentler on your teeth and gums.

Some people may prefer to undergo hydrogen peroxide teeth whitening in a dental office setting. The dentist will ask the person to come in for a cleaning first. A professional dental cleaning will allow the hydrogen peroxide to penetrate the teeth evenly giving a bright smile.

Also during this appointment, the dentist will check for cracks, as cracks in the teeth can allow the peroxide to penetrate further into the tooth. This is important as it can become a problem if the peroxide comes into contact with the underlying dentin as it is likely to cause irritation or sensitivity.

Common At Home Remedies For Teeth Whitening

There are many other teeth whitening solutions that people can use at home. Many are not effective at achieving the proper teeth whitening a dentist can.

Most of these home remedies for tooth whitening should be relatively safe to try, though. They include:

-charcoal and salt

-baking soda

-lemon juice

-oil pulling with coconut oil

-apple cider vinegar

The American Dental Association does not recommend any of these methods for at home teeth whitening. Research also suggests that some of these methods are not effective and may actually harm the teeth or cause other adverse effects. So beware of the possible consequences. It is always best to speak to your dentist prior to attempting any of these treatments at home.

At Home Teeth Whitening Conclusion

Teeth whitening is a personal choice in many cases. It can also be quite dangerous to attempt on your own at home. Seek out professional care and advice form your dentist to ensure you achieve the results you want in a safe healthy manner.


Teeth whitening has become quite popular over the last 2 decades. From over the counter whitening toothpastes to teeth whitening strips to professional teeth whitening. People are in pursuit of that perfectly white smile. Teeth whitening is a positive thing if it makes you feel good about yourself.

Marielaina Perrone DDS Teeth Whitening

Methods Of Teeth Whitening

There are multiple ways to achieve the same goal…..whiter teeth. Some methods can be done at home by yourself and others will need the supervision of a dental professional.

-Teeth Whitening Toothpastes. This method is probably the cheapest and easiest to use but also will give limited results. Many premium toothpastes now include teeth whitening ingredients to help you achieve a whiter, brighter smile. Unfortunately, teeth whitening tooth pastes have their negatives. The results are extremely variable from individual to individual. If your smile has extensive staining and discoloration, these toothpastes may not work as well as for someone who has very light discoloration and tooth staining. However we are brushing anyway, so why not give it a try and see what the results may bring for your individual smile.

-Teeth Whitening Strips. This method has an increased cost over the teeth whitening toothpastes and can give very good results. You can buy a box of teeth whitening strips at your local pharmacy.The active teeth whitening ingredients in the strips are generally the same as dentists use in their professional teeth whitening products but the concentration of the teeth whitening ingredients in the store bought products will come in at a much lower level. The drawback to the lower concentration of whitening ingredients is that they may not get your teeth to whiten as much as you would like. The other drawback is the application of the teeth whitening strips. The whitening strips must be placed across all the teeth evenly, and cannot be directly applied to one that is stained more. The fit is sometimes not the greatest, and they have the possibility to irritate periodontal tissues.

-Teeth Whitening With Custom Trays. This procedure is completed in a dental office. The custom trays fit your mouth comfortably and allow for an even distribution of the teeth whitening gel across all teeth or can only applied to specific teeth or even a single tooth. The trays can be worn day or night (even overnight) over a period of one to 4 weeks, and are very convenient for people with active schedules on the go. The other advantage is that this type of teeth whitening is that your dentist will use a stronger whitening agent. The main disadvantages to this type of teeth whitening versus the at home techniques is that the cost is higher, and sensitivity may be greater, but the results are usually far better.

-Teeth Whitening Performed In Dental Office. This is by far the highest cost, fastest, and generally most effective Teeth Whitening option available. This teeth whitening procedure is performed by your dentist using a special dental light and teeth whitening gel. This type of teeth whitening can deliver fantastic results in as little as 1/2 hour to one full hour. This teeth whitening technique utilizes a highly concentrated whitening agent accelerated by heat and light  to speed up the teeth whitening process. The disadvantage is the higher cost of  Teeth Whitening.

Teeth Whitening Conclusion

As written above there are many choices available for teeth whitening whether at home or in your dentist’s office. Discuss the various options for teeth whitening with your dentist to see what would be the best for your individual smile. Teeth whitening has seen a rapid growth. Talk to your dentist at your next visit to see what options are right for you.


Our smile is an important part of who we are. It is the first thing people notice when we meet. Therefore more people want a white, bright smile to feel good about themselves. Teeth whitening products have become very popular including teeth whitening strips. But are they safe to use? New studies reveal they may not be safe.

Our teeth are not all uniformly white and vary from individual to individual naturally. The reality is most teeth are different hues and shades and many tend towards the yellow spectrum. In the western world, we want uniform white teeth. It has become a symbol of beauty for many. It is believed somewhere around 40 million people in the USA alone used teeth whitening products in 2018. This shows teeth whitening popularity in just the United States. Cosmetic dentists are uniquely prepared to give patients the smile they want. However, many may choose to use over the counter products like teeth whitening strips.

Dangers Of Teeth Whitening

Teeth whitening gels contain an active teeth whitening ingredient (usually carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide) that has the ability to penetrate your enamel to get to discolored molecules. Oxygen molecules from the whitening agents mix and react with the discolored molecules in your teeth, breaking the bonds that hold them together. The oxygen molecules spread, whitening the entire surface of the tooth. As a result, you are left with a brighter, whiter smile.

Numerous studies have shown that teeth whitening with bleaching products that contain hydrogen peroxide can possibly cause damage to our teeth. These studies specifically looked at how teeth whitening strips, which people can buy at local pharmacies, damage one of the teeth’s three layers.

Teeth whitening strips generally contain hydrogen peroxide as the main active whitening ingredient. This substance is an oxidizing agent that can be used as a sterilizer, although more people may know it as a color-lightening agent. This is also what is used to bleach hair. If a person were to overuse this product or use too much to lighten hair color, it can cause “significant damage” to the scalp and hair.

Researchers have discovered how hydrogen peroxide damages dentin (layer just below the enamel of our teeth). A human tooth contains three (3) different layers: external enamel layer, a dentin layer in the middle, and an inner layer that is mainly connective tissue, which helps maintain the tooth’s position in the mouth.

 Hydrogen peroxide can go right through the enamel and penetrate the dentin, which contains about 90–95 percent of the protein collagen.The research team found that the collagen present in dentin becomes fragmented when exposed to hydrogen peroxide, which leads to the loss of collagen mass in the dentin layer. The scientists are unsure at this time whether this damage is permanent or if there is any way of reversing it. In future research, the researchers also plan to find out whether hydrogen peroxide affects not just collagen, but also other proteins that dentin contains.

Teeth Whitening Strips Conclusion

The main takeaway from this research is to use these products in moderation and under the supervision of a well trained cosmetic dentist. This will ensure you get the smile you want and desrve and also maintain a healthy smile that looks good!

For many of us, whiter teeth are a sign of youth, beauty, and vitality. If your teeth look dull and lifeless, you may lose some self confidence causing you to miss out on precious moments in life. As we age, our teeth will lose some of their natural whiteness, changing instead to a yellowish, even brownish/gray tinge. This occurs from our daily habits like drinking coffee, possibly smoking, or drinking red wine.

We are bombarded by magazine and television ads displaying models with perfectly white teeth. After awhile, you begin to wonder whether you can have whiter, brighter teeth too? Luckily, there are many options out there to do just that. The traditional way has been to go to the dentist and have them professionally whitened under controlled conditions. Today, we have other options like teeth whitening toothpastes. Are these toothpastes effective at whitening our teeth?

What Is Special About Teeth Whitening Toothpastes?

Most of us use toothpaste every day just to maintain our dental hygiene. It is a product we are all very familiar with. Manufactures have now found a way to add an extra element to your favorite toothpastes allowing the addition of teeth whitening materials into the mix to give you an added benefit.  Some are more abrasive to help remove surface stains, some have peroxide and other additive ingredients to actually allow for some deeper whitening to occur. It should be noted that teeth whitening toothpastes do work, but they will NOT whiten your teeth as effectively as your dentist can. Also, each individual’s results will vary.

Teeth whitening toothpastes commonly contain the following ingredients:

-Hydrogen peroxide. The same teeth whitening ingredient used in most teeth whitening strips. This is found in the new Colgate Optic White toothpaste.

-Sodium Hydroxide. This is another ingredient used to whiten teeth. Crest 3D white toothpaste utilizes this as it’s main teeth whitening agent.

-Sodium Tripolyphosphate. Do not be scared off by the long name. This chemical is effective in removing stains from the enamel on your teeth.

-Blue Covarine. This chemical is present in some teeth whitening toothpaste. Blue covarine has the ability to adhere to the surface of teeth creating an optical illusion that can make our teeth appear less yellow.

-Abrasives. These abrasives, such as baking soda, will provide a perfect cleansing and polishing on the teeth surface and over time will remove light stains that make our teeth appear yellowish or brown.

When used twice a day, teeth whitening toothpaste generally takes from two to six weeks to make teeth appear whiter and brighter. Teeth whitening toothpastes that contain blue covarine can have an almost immediate effect on your smile.

Teeth Whitening Toothpaste Conclusion

Americans spend over $1.5 billion on toothpaste per year and it is a rapidly growing market. Many of the toothpastes have become quite specialized, especially those geared towards teeth whitening. But do teeth whitening toothpastes really work? The simple answer is yes, but to what degree?. If your teeth are brown and discolored, it will not work as effectively as a professional teeth whitening. The difference being, that the dentist uses chemicals specifically designed to whiten teeth (and applied under very controlled conditions) whereas many of the teeth whitening toothpastes on the market use much lower concentrations of these whitening agents, or none at all. Don’t get overly frustrated if using teeth whitening toothpastes don’t do much for you. They are helpful in some mild degree of whitening, but will not give you the super white smile that actual professional whitening will. They are best used as an adjunct to a professional whitening, to help keep your teeth whiter and brighter longer, or for younger people to brighten up an already nice smile. Teeth whitening toothpastes are a cost effective way to brighten your smile, discontinue use if they begin to cause sensitivity.

It is always recommended you see your dentist for professional cleanings and dental examinations. This is a perfect time to discuss teeth whitening options and what method would work best for you. Teeth whitening can be a very personalized choice and each program can be tailored to each patient’s needs and expectations. Find out today how to get your teeth whiter and brighter.