Just 37.5% of Canadians brush their teeth twice per day or more. However, more people are beginning to brush their teeth more often and are concerned about their smiles. Teeth whitening is becoming popular as people want to get rid of stains on their teeth and can’t reach the results that they want in the short term from brushing more often.
Thankfully, Canada has a lot of teeth whitening options available to them.
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3 Teeth Whitening Options for Canadians
1. At-Home Whitening
Most people begin teeth whitening at home. You can find a lot of at-home whitening options, such as:
- Whitening Strips: Whitening strips contain a small amount of hydrogen peroxide and will require one-to-two applications per day. However, you will need to adhere to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Whitening Toothpaste: One of the leading whitening options is to use whitening toothpaste. The one downside of whitening toothpaste is that the results are gradual, so you’ll need to brush with it to see results continually. Abrasives are used for whitening, called blue covarine.
Over-the-counter whitening works best for people who have minor stains on their teeth. However, if you need to remove multiple layers of stains, you’ll likely need an in-office treatment or consider professional at-home whitening.
2. In-Office Treatments
An in-office treatment provides the best whitening results and is recommended for anyone who has stains on their teeth and wants to get rid of them as soon as possible. Additionally, professional treatments in a dental office provide longer-lasting results than any of the other options available.
Zoom Whitening is one of the most common procedures for whitening teeth, and this involves the following:
- Applying a whitening gel consisting of a high concentration of hydrogen peroxide to the teeth and allowing it to sit for around 15 minutes.
- The Zoom light is applied to penetrate the teeth’s enamel and start to dissolve the stains.
Multiple applications will be necessary, and the treatment can last up to one hour. The goal is to get as deep into the enamel as possible to really break down the stains that are stopping you from having a perfect white smile.
Once the desired results are achieved, the dentist will apply another gel to the teeth to reduce sensitivity. You’ll find that most people have minimal sensitivity – if any – following treatment. However, due to the treatment and the heat involved, you may experience slight sensitivity for a day or so.
The gel works to stop this discomfort before it begins.
Finally, there are touch-up kits, which are given after treatment to help keep the teeth white and remove any staining that occurs. The Zoom whitening treatment will provide one of the longest-lasting whitening results and is able to get rid of much more mature stains.
If you find that the procedure is not something you want to pursue, there are other professional options that you can attempt at home.
3. Professional At-Home Whitening
If you don’t see results with at-home whitening and don’t want to go with in-office treatments, there are professional treatments that you can use at home. These treatments use much higher concentrations of whitening solutions than any of the over-the-counter options that you choose.
However, you’ll still need to go to the dentist, who will then:
- Take impressions of your mouth and create a custom-fit tray that is designed to fit your teeth properly
- Apply gel to the tray and wear it for up to an hour each day
- Continue the treatment for up to 14 days or however long the dentist recommends
Professional at-home treatments are less expensive than in-office treatments, and they will provide a much better whitening than the over-the-counter options available. However, you need to be diligent with your treatments and ensure that you follow instructions carefully.
Some stains are difficult to treat, and improper treatment may lead to poor results.
Which Whitening Treatment is Best for You?
Whitening your teeth isn’t always easy. Some people have very deep stains and will need different levels of whitening to achieve the results they desire. It’s best to discuss your options with your dentist to gain insight into the results that you can expect.
With that said, the best whitening options go in this order:
- Professional, in-office treatments
- Professional, at-home treatments
- Over-the-counter treatments
If you have severe staining, your only option to whiten your smile may be to go to a dental office and have a procedure, such as Zoom whitening, performed. However, for minor staining, you can always try and see how over-the-counter whitening works for you.