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The Truth about Teeth Whitening!!!

Updated: Aug 7, 2023

Everybody wants whiter teeth and why not. Unfortunately teeth appear yellow - due to the darker substructure of the teeth showing through. This innate yellowness can increase with age as the outer surface of the tooth becomes thinner and the substructure becomes more visible.

Yellow teeth can be completely healthy and natural , however they do not look great.

So what options do you have to restore the colour of your teeth to a whiter shade

Firstly it is important to understand why the teeth are appearing yellow or discoloured. As well as naturally being yellow teeth can also appear discoloured due to staining , damage/trauma, medical conditions and treatments.

It is very important to know the cause as the treatment will differ depending on the cause.

But dont worry this is why dentists train for 6 years to be able to work these things out.

Once you have ruled out all of the other causes and you are just left with a healthy naturally yellow smile - whitening treatments can be offered.

What treatment options are there?

With dentistry treatment options change over time and even at a point in time dentistry is practiced differently in different countries and even in the same country.

The key to producing good quality dentistry that works is to follow scientific evidence based recognised teachings - this goes for all dental and even medical treatment.

What does this mean? Treatment options will have been tested through rigorous scientific methods funded by universities/institutions to produce evidence of what works and what does not.

Safe teeth whitening can only be carried out by using a specially formulated bleaching solution which has masses of scientific evidence to support its use in various cases.

This solution is only legally available to dentists to purchase and cant be purchased over the counter or online.

The high court ruled in the case of GDC v Jamous [2013] EWHC 1428 that tooth whitening is the practice of dentistry.

And the dentists act 1984 states that dentistry can only legally be carried out by dental professionals registered with the GDC due to the risks unregulated tooth whitening can pose.

What about whitening toothpastes / strips ?

As stated legal whitening gel can only be sold to dentists and not sold over the counter or anywhere else. So what about the big companies who have released whitening toothpastes and other whitening products you can buy in supermarkets, they cant be selling something illegally?

Some whitening toothpastes DO NOT contain the scientifically tested and regulated solution which dentists use to whiten teeth as it is illegal to do so. So these toothpastes often contain abrasive ingredients which make the teeth appear whiter through abrading the top layer of your teeth the enamel. THIS IS NOT recommended as unlike skin or other body tissues your teeth are one of the only body parts that do not grow back once damaged - unlike skin , nerves , bone which can repair and grow back naturally. So abrasion of your tooth enamel will lead to thin enamel which can lead to sensitivity , recession of the gums , decay and nerve damage. So we do not recommend over the counter whitening toothpastes.

What about the bright white light whitening sessions?

Some companies offer tooth whitening in the chair where a special light is shone onto the teeth and gel solution which supposedly activates the whitening and achieves a greater result.

Any dental professional who understands evidence based dentistry will advise you the scientific evidence states the light is not advised as it dehydrates the teeth which make them appear whiter for a few minutes immediately after your procedure however the natural colour restores more quickly and it is not as effective as home teeth whitening which has longer lasting more stable results , less risks and also works out cheaper for you.

We offer professional tooth whitening in Plymouth and Devon and you can be sure your teeth are in great hands and achieve the whiter teeth you desire

If you would like to find out more book in for a consultation and take advantage of our limited offers

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