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Yes, it is. Teeth whitening is widely practised by dentists throughout the world and hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide are allowed to use and supply products with 0.1% - 6% hydrogen peroxide (6% hydrogen peroxide approximately equates 17% carbamide peroxide). We will later discuss the difference between hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide.
Though teeth whitening strips and teeth whitening gel are non-harmful to the human body, it is advised that children under the age of 18, pregnant women, and those sensitive to hydrogen peroxide should not use them. Patients wiith teeth sensitive to cold, heat or acid, or those who suffer from oral ulceration should discuss this with their prescribing dentist before undergoing a course of teeth whitening treatment.
A European Directive was brought into force in 2012 to protect patients from illegal teeth whitening. It is now illegal for teeth whitening treatment to be taken in beauty salons, hairdressers or similar places. It is also for your only safety to take teeth whitening treatment in an authorised dental clinic to minimise the risk.
Generally, immediately after bleaching, the color will fade slightly and then remain stable for approx. 6 months to a year, sometimes longer. It is recommended for maintenance to touch up your smile every 4-6 months with 1-2 applications (Source). This depends on personal dietary and lifestyle habits such as smoking. Regarding of what whitening treatment you choose your teeth will not stay white forever - you will need to repeat the whitening again in the future because your teeth will gradually discolour over time. To help keep your teeth whiter for longer period of time it is best to avoid smoking or consuming foods and drinks that stain your teeth, e.g. strong coloured foods, red wine, coffee, etc. As we mentioned before, whitening that is done slowly and steadily will create longer-lasting results, especially when used with daily maintenance products such as whitening toothpaste and toothbrushes.
The whitening results vary. Some teeth may whiten dramatically in just a few days, while others can take a few months. The majority of people got their teeth whiten within two to three weeks. The more yellow versus gray colour you have in your teeth, the better the teeth whitening results. Grey enamel similar to that of Tetracycline (anti-biotic) staining is more difficult to bleach and can take a few months to achieve the best result.
It is not uncommon to experience tooth sensitivity whilst whitening your teeth. This is temporary and NOT harmful. To alleviate symptoms it may be sensible to whiten your teeth on alternate days. The use of a sensitive toothpaste could also help. When purchasing your teeth whitening products you will have the opportunity to discuss with your dentist who may give you an individual treatment plan for your whitening.
Teeth whitening will ONLY whiten natural teeth; it will not affect caps, crowns, veneers, bridges, fillings or dentures. Do not use on loose teeth, temporary fillings or orthodontic appliances. Do consult your dentist if you have any dental concerns over whitening your teeth.
It is best to discuss your individual needs with your dentists who can tailor a teeth whitening treatment plan specifically to achieve your desired results. However, it is usually best to start with the simplest and the most cost effective option first. We suggest starting with teeth whitening strips and if you still desire a whiter smile then probably the tray whitening system at a later time.