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Teeth whitening's a hot topic right now, and the good news is that having a bright, white smile is no longer something only celebrities and rich people can dream of. But with so many whitening products and treatments now available, it can be hard to figure out what's effective, and more importantly, what's safe. Chapel Park Dental say there are some common teeth whitening myths we definitely shouldn't be believing.
First of all, the myth that teeth whitening will damage your enamel is completely untrue.
Teeth whitening is a form of dentistry and should only be performed by a dentist, dental hygienist or dental therapist. Some beauty salons offer teeth whitening - not only is this illegal if there's no dental professional present, but it may put your teeth at risk. Secondly, most bizzarely, the myth that rubbing fruit on your teeth can help remove stains can only seriously damage your teeth with the acid causing your tooth enamel to wear away.
Another myth is that once whitened, teeth will stay white forever. Unfortunately not. After your first treatment, the effects of good living will continue to show on your teeth - this includes drinking red wine, tea or coffee, and smoking, which can all cause staining. However, is unlikely that the teeth will go back to their original colour, Dentists recommend topping up by having a whitening treatment every few months.
Simiarly, with the myth that active charcoal is the secret to whiter teeth, there is not enough scientific gravitas to support whether or not charcoal works. Some people believe whitening will make your teeth look unnatural, but whitening is a progressive treatment. If you're using at-home whitening trays for example, the more days you use them, the whiter your teeth will become, so it's in your control. If you're happy after three days or so, you can stop there and don't need to continue. There's also a finite level of whitening which can be achieved, and this depends on what shade your teeth were when you started.
Finally, you need not worry that whitening will cause extreme sensitivity. On the whole, teeth whitening shouldn't hurt, so if it's stinging, burning or irritating your mouth in any other way, you should stop that particular treatment immediately. However, a little bit of sensitivity isn't uncommon. Teeth whitening can cause sensitivity, but this can be managed by using certain special formulas. Ask your dentist if the whitening system they're using is based on carbamide peroxide or includes ACP (amorphous calcium phosphate), as this will cause less sensitivity. Using a daily mouthwash can also help to relieve tooth sensitivity.