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St. Anthony, MN 55421

St. Anthony, MN 55421

Maple Grove, MN 55369

Maple Grove, MN 55369

Are Whitening Strips Bad for Your Teeth?

February 29, 2024

Whitening strips are emerging as a new sensation, widely spread by influencers and internet gurus. They not only use it themselves on screen but also endorse them. Some are even crafting DIY whitening strips. Therefore, common people are also tempted to use them.

However, not all whitening strips are bad for your teeth, except the ones with chlorine dioxide. Yet, consult your dentist before using them to avoid harming your precious enamel. Your adult teeth have only one life!

How Do Whitening Strips Work?

The plastic strip in the package is drenched in peroxide; the quantity varies with the brand. You can take the strip out and apply it on the surface of your teeth as per direction. You must keep them on for the peroxide to penetrate your teeth. These strips efficiently bleach stains with hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide.

These peroxides are powerful enough to penetrate your teeth and reach the dentin layer to bleach the chromogens. These pigmented molecules are the culprit behind causing teeth stains. However, you can see the best results when you use them to remove extrinsic staining.

Do Dentists Recommend Teeth Whitening Strips?

Whitening strips that are ADA-approved are considered safe to use. But you can still turn to your dentist for a second opinion, just to be on the safer side. Your dentist can assess whether they are suitable for you. This assessment is made based on the patient’s dental health, the reason behind the tooth discoloration, and the desired result.

Therefore, a dentist won’t recommend any before evaluating your dental health as there can be underlying causes to worsen the whitening procedure. After all, there is no match for personalized dental care.

Risk Factors Associated with Whitening Strips

Your teeth can survive the teeth whitening procedure if they don’t come into contact with chlorine dioxide. Following are some problems that occur due to this harsh chemical:

  • Irreversible Enamel Damage

    You can use most whitening strips, but steer clear of an active ingredient called “chlorine dioxide.” It can cause irrecoverable harm to your dental enamel. Acidic substances can destroy your dental health, and chlorine dioxide is acidic. Once your mouth becomes extremely acidic, your enamel erodes quickly.

  • Gum irritation

    Chlorine dioxide is highly acidic; therefore, it can also cause gum inflammation. Even if the whitening strips without chlorine dioxide remain on your teeth for long, they can damage your gum health. It can further trigger gum swelling and bleeding. So, be careful with the usage time and follow instructions properly.

  • Uneven Whitening

    Whitening strips do not always provide uniform whitening outcomes. This can result in splotchy whitening of the teeth. Some spots can appear brighter than others.

  • Allergic Reactions

    Some people can experience allergic reactions or other negative effects to the chemicals present in whitening strips. These include chlorine dioxide. It’s crucial to watch for any allergic sensitivities before using these products.

  • Overuse

    Using whitening strips too often or for extended periods beyond the recommended usage can elevate the adverse effects, such as enamel erosion and tooth sensitivity.

  • Pre-existing Dental Issues

    People with existing dental problems such as cavities, gum disease, or worn enamel must restrict the use of whitening strips. They can consult their dentist for a solution rather than worsen these conditions.

  • Temporary Results

    The whitening effects of chlorine dioxide whitening strips are often temporary and can fade over time. Individuals with habits like smoking or consuming staining foods and beverages can fall victim to it more easily.

Ending Note

We humans love quick results, which adds to the popularity of whitening strips. But using them without consultation from your dentist is not recommended. Otherwise, you won’t benefit but harm your teeth.

You can visit our expert general dentist, Dr. Prem Kumar, at Almond Dental. Our doctor provides patient-centered care to patients of all ages at their practice. Call us at (612) 782-7000 to book an appointment.


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