Teeth Whitening Toothpastes – Do They Work?

Our Greenwich cosmetic dentist looks at this much advertised dental product.

We are sure that you can’t have missed  the numerous adverts currently on TV, promoting various teeth whitening toothpastes.

Understandably, these adverts are quite successful. After all, who wouldn’t want to have whiter teeth simply by changing their toothpaste?

Unfortunately, successfully whitening your teeth is more complicated than this, and, in today’s blog, we take a look at why patients should be cautious about the promises these toothpastes offer.

Do teeth whitening toothpastes work?

Teeth whitening toothpastes can have a minor effect on the colour of your teeth; however, the results are likely to be barely noticeable to most patients. There is a world of difference between using one of these toothpastes and receiving a teeth whitening procedure from our Greenwich cosmetic dentist.

There are two ways in which various toothpastes claim to whiten teeth.

Removal of surface staining – Some whitening toothpastes include an abrasive element which is designed to remove stains from the enamel surface. The reality though is that most toothpastes already contain an abrasive element, and additional abrasives may even wear down and damage the surface enamel of your teeth if you brush too hard, increasing the risk of sensitive teeth or even decay.

Internal teeth whitening – As we have mentioned in previous Confidental Clinic blogs, however well we look after our teeth, the inner part naturally darkens as we grow older. Some whitening toothpastes contain a bleaching agent designed to lighten the inner part of the tooth. However, because of legal restrictions, the amount contained in this toothpaste is very small and any lightening of the inner tooth is likely to be minor.

Effective alternatives

Taking the above two methods of whitening teeth, it is worth looking at the equivalent alternatives available at our Greenwich practice, both of which are far more effective than the use of a tooth whitening toothpaste.

Scale and polish –  The thorough polish applied during your regular hygiene visits removes surface staining more effectively than any abrasive in your toothpaste. You will also improve your oral health and probably have sweeter smelling breath too.

Teeth whitening procedure – When the inner part of the tooth needs lightening to reverse discolouration, our home teeth whitening treatment will prove far more effective than any toothpaste. Whilst a similar whitening bleach may be used in both methods, the quantity allowed under the supervision of a dental professional is much greater and more effective than that in a whitening toothpaste. We should emphasise that this bleaching agent is perfectly safe if used by a qualified person such as our cosmetic dentists.

If you are unhappy with your discoloured teeth and would like to have them whitened both safely and effectively, please call the Confidental Clinic in Greenwich today on 020 8858 1422.