How To Keep Your Teeth White With Any Budget
One thing that we all want is a whiter and brighter smile. Today, the various products available can help anyone on any budget whiten their teeth. Whether you whiten your teeth at home with one of the many self-whitening products, or visit your dentist for a professional treatment, there is something for everyone.
The truth is a whiter smile can do wonders for your self-esteem. We have all heard the joke about the ‘piece of broccoli’ stuck in the teeth; this joke is evidence of the importance of our teeth’s appearance.
Professionally Performed Teeth Whitening Options
- Laser Teeth Whitening/In-Office Bleaching
This procedure is performed by your dentist. He will use a hydrogen peroxide gel that bleaches your teeth and a laser light. This procedure takes several hours and is quite costly. The in-office bleaching is a very effective whitening method. It produces excellent results in no time whatsoever.
Cost: The cost of this procedure varies depending on the part of the country you reside in and the kind of treatment you undergo. On average, each office visit is usually around $650. The number of office visits will depend on the amount of staining on your teeth.
- At-Home Whitening Gel Kits (Professionally Dispensed)
The gels used for teeth whitening at home also contain hydrogen peroxide. These gels remove the stains on your tooth enamel making your teeth whiter. Many dentists feel the at-home whitening kits that are professionally dispensed, will produce the greatest results.
These kits integrate a lower-concentration of the peroxide gel. This gel will remain on your teeth for no less than an hour. Some kits require that you keep the gel on overnight. You apply the gel to your teeth by using bleaching trays that have been custom-made for you.
Cost: At-home teeth whitening kits from the dentist generally cost from $100 to $400.
- At-Home Teeth Whitening Systems
The least expensive and most convenient way to whiten your teeth, using a bleaching gel, is with a store-bought kit. These kits contain a lower concentration of the same bleaching gel given in the professionally dispensed at-home kits.
Applying the gel to the teeth is accomplished via paint-on applicators, whitening strips or in a one-size fits all tray.
Cost: A medium to high-end over-the-counter teeth-whitening kit will cost from $45 to $100 and should last a week or two.
- Teeth Whitening Strips
The teeth whitening strips available also contain a gel with hydrogen peroxide in them. These are considered extremely easy to use and comfortable. They are also a very economical choice. However, they do need to be used regularly. These strips are usually applied daily for two or three weeks.
Cost: The strips cost from $20 to $40, depending on the brand.
- Whitening Mouthwash/Chewing Gum
There are various brands of mouthwash and chewing gum available at your local supermarket to whiten your teeth.
Cost: The mouthwash price varies from $3 to $20, depending on the brand and size of the bottle purchased.
Cost: The chewing gum is a great option for those who chew gum regularly already. The price ranges from around $2.50 to $25.00. Of course, this pricing is based on the size of the package and the brand chosen.
- Toothpastes for Whitening
Toothpastes, high in fluorides, are also effective in providing users with exceptional whitening results. You should brush your teeth at least two times a day with a fluoride enriched toothpaste. This will help to eliminate stains on your teeth and other diseases related to your gums. Although this method is the least expensive of the whitening methods, fast results should not be anticipated.
Cost: Price for the whitening toothpaste ranges from about $3 to $5, depending.
- Natural Teeth Whitening with Strawberry Pulp & Baking Soda
The malic acid that is naturally found in strawberries is the astringent that removes surface discoloration on your teeth. This whitening method is extremely inexpensive, requiring only baking soda and fresh strawberries.
If you need to buff away stains from coffee, dark soda and wine, this is the perfect ‘emergency’ remedy. Another thing to consider is that if you use this method too frequently, the acids from the strawberry could eventually damage your tooth enamel.
Create strawberry pulp by crushing the strawberry. Mix the strawberry pulp with ¼ teaspoon of baking soda. Using a soft toothbrush spread the mixture all over your teeth. Leave it on for about five minutes, and then brush your teeth using toothpaste. This will remove the baking soda/berry mix from your teeth. Rinse your mouth and then floss. This procedure can be done once weekly.
Teeth Whitening & Kids
Although many of the over-the-counter whitening products seem to consider 12 years old the perfect age, this is not necessarily the case. Experts recommend that children should not whiten their teeth, unless under the professional supervision of a children’s dentist. Concerns related to damaging the child’s teeth and unnecessary trauma to the child are the reason for this recommendation. Studies show that 60% of children who have their teeth whitened suffer from tooth sensitivity and gum irritation, which many children find extremely difficult to contend with.
Ideally, teeth whitening should not be used on children. Once they turn 18 years old, the aforementioned concerns are no longer an issue and teeth whitening can begin.