White teeth are extremely attractive and represent having an extremely healthy mouth. However, most people's teeth will naturally yellow due to exposure to food and drink, as well as general age. Thankfully, there are a number of different products available on the market which can whiten your teeth and leave your face with a radiant glow. Understanding the differences between each type of teeth whitening product can help you choose the one that best fits your dental needs.
Toothpaste and Mouthwash
As a general rule of thumb, you can prevent your teeth from staining or discoloring by purchasing and using whitening toothpaste and mouthwash every day. While results may be limited in actually whitening teeth that are already yellow, both of these options can prevent stains from getting worse and may provide some mild discoloration relief.
Whitening strips are a home tooth whitening solution that are applied every day for two weeks to a month. They contain a mild bleaching agent, and are usually designed to only be left on for a half hour to an hour. Whitening strips will provide a greater degree of stain removal than toothpaste and mouthwash will, but care must be taken to ensure that the strips are properly applied so that your teeth are whitened evenly.
Tray Teeth Whiteners
Tray teeth whiteners are also a home tooth whitening solution, but unlike whitening strips, which simply adhere to the front of your teeth, tray teeth whiteners make use of a mouth guard-like insertion that is filled with a bleaching agent. This allows for a more even whitening of your teeth and tends to be more effective than whitening strips. However, tray teeth whiteners are a lot harder to set up and apply than tooth whitening strips, which greatly reduces their convenience and makes messing up the application process a real possibility.
Professional teeth whitening, done in a dental office by a cosmetic dentist, is the most expensive but also the most reliable method of whitening your teeth. The process takes the form of applying a whitening gel to your teeth, and then using a UV lamp to activate the gel, usually letting it shine for a couple of minutes. The process itself can be completed in a single visit, and because the materials used are of a higher quality and applied professionally when compared to homemade options, professional whitening services will provide results that are immediately visible.