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Teeth Whitening: how it is performed, duration and risks

Teeth Whitening: how it is performed, duration and risks

Teeth Whitening: how it is performed, duration and risks

Your smile is a business card and white teeth are deeply associated with stereotypes of beauty, health and well-being. Besides contributing to the aesthetic perception and clear look of a smile, Tooth Whitening improves quality of life and self-esteem. That is why tooth whitening is one of the most requested services in Dentistry.

Tooth whitening is a medical procedure that makes teeth whiter without damaging them. thecaretrip’s Partner Clinic works with the Opalescence brand, one of the most reputable tooth whitening brands with guaranteed results. The method used is non-invasive, easy to perform, painless and effective in removing and modifying tooth pigmentation.

How is teeth whitening performed?

Currently, there are two whitening techniques available:

  • At a dental clinic (inpatient service): a whitening agent is applied and activated by an LED light-emitting device. Among other advantages, this option is performed by a Dentist, with immediate results.
  • At home (outpatient service): this whitening technique is performed at home under medical supervision after clinical assessment and establishing a therapeutic plan.

TheCaretrip’s Partner Clinic uses a home (outpatient) whitening system that is controlled and supervised by the dentist.

How are teeth whitened?

Tooth whitening uses a whitening agent composed of hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. The whitening gel comes into contact with the surface of the tooth, and enters the enamel and dentine by releasing molecules and oxidating tooth pigments, which whitens the tooth. Tooth whitening procedures use substances that also prevent dehydration and increase colour stability thanks to elements such as fluorine and potassium nitrate, which strengthen tooth enamel, decrease sensitivity and provide protection against tooth decay.

With the Opalescence system, used by thecaretrip’s Partner Clinic, the product is applied using single dose syringes with a high-viscosity sticky transparent gel (avoids spreading to soft tissues) including carbamide peroxide, potassium nitrate and sodium fluoride. Potassium and fluorine improve the overall health of teeth and increase patient comfort during the procedure.

Gels are available in carbamide peroxide concentrations of 10 % and 16 %. There are 3 flavours available: regular, mint and melon. Each Opalescence kit contains 8x 1.2 ml (1.5 g) Syringes + 1x 1.2 ml (1.38 g) Resin LC Block-Out Syringe with Mini Tip + 25 ml (32 g) Whitening Toothpaste + 2x 0.9 mm Tray Plates + 1 Tray Holder + Colour Guide

The dentist makes moulds of the patient’s mouth to produce mouth guards (transparent mould) that are fully adapted to the patient’s teeth. At home, the patient applies the whitening agent on the mouth guard and places it in his/her mouth for the recommended time, which varies between 4 to 10 hours depending on the concentration of the whitening product. The recommended treatment duration is between 7 to 15 days, maximum.

Watch the video to see a step by step guide for this treatment.

Before performing a Tooth Whitening procedure, it is essential to have an assessment appointment with the Dentist, where each patient’s needs and preferences are assessed, and the most effective method is selected. It is also essential to perform scaling to remove superficial stains resulting from dental plaque accumulation.

What is the difference between this whitening gel sold in a dental clinic and those sold in pharmacies, supermarkets or other places?

Vous pouvez trouver de nombreux produits de blanchiment des dents en vente dans les You can find numerous tooth whitening products for sale in supermarkets, TV shops, and online stores. In general, these products are ineffective because the substances sold at the dentist cannot be purchased at the supermarket. Given the lack of control of these substances, they are also not as safe.

Products sold in pharmacies are ineffective because the active ingredient is sodium. Carbamide peroxide mixes with oxygen to provide a deep whitening effect. By penetrating the teeth, it makes the tooth whitening process more effective and the whitening last longer.

 How long does the treatment last?

Results are visible from the first application. This treatment’s durability differs from one person to another, but there are measures that can prolong the result obtained for many years:

  • Avoiding tobacco, tea, coffee, red wine, soft drinks and other foods and beverages capable of staining the teeth;
  • Having an effective oral hygiene combined with an adequate toothpaste;
  • Regularly attending control appointments with the Dentist.

What are the side effects of whitening?

Tooth sensitivity is the most common side effect after a whitening procedure, and results from the interaction between the components of the whitening agent and the tooth surface. This side effect is usually very mild and temporary, disappearing after a few hours or a day depending on the concentrations of the gel that is used. At thecaretrip’s Partner Clinic, product concentrations are compatible with the health of the soft and hard tissues in the oral cavity.

If a patient has tooth sensitivity he/she should inform the doctor before starting the treatment in order to adjust the treatment type and duration, and provide information regarding possible desensitising procedures.

Are there any risks to teeth whitening?

This procedure can be performed by anyone as long as there are no cavities and the dentist’s instructions are followed. However, if the person has very extensive restorations, a whitening procedure may not be advisable because the gel only whitens the natural tooth. The whitened tooth remains unchanged in terms of its dental structure.

Why do teeth darken?

Some people are born with slightly yellow teeth, others have teeth that darken with age. The original colour of teeth can change due to several factors such as tobacco, drinking coffee, certain foods, tartar accumulation, etc. Internal stains can be caused by antibiotics and the ageing process itself, which also contributes to tooth darkening. Devitalising a tooth can lead to tooth darkening.