Whitening products that can be purchased online or at the drugstore have become ubiquitous. You’ve probably seen ads on magazines or social media for easily obtainable whitening products that promise pearlier whites after one use. The appeal is obvious. After all, everyone wants shiny, white teeth! But do these products really work, and more importantly, are they safe?
The good news is that these products will typically give you some results, to an extent. The ingredients that actually do the whitening—usually carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide—are present in many over-the-counter (OTC) whitening options, but in much weaker concentrations than what you’d receive in the dentist’s office. This means that you can’t receive the same results as quickly or effectively as you would from a professional treatment.
The bad news? Sometimes DIY whitening products, particularly those indie brands you may have seen advertised on Facebook or Instagram, are completely unregulated. They may not even have active whitening ingredients in their formulas, or may use a “magic light” that doesn’t do anything. Conversely, the active ingredients can be too strong, and dangerous to use and ingest.
If you’re looking for an inexpensive, easily accessible whitening product, Crest Whitestrips are probably the best, safest option. They are regulated and accepted by the American Dental Association, and will give you some small improvement in the whiteness of your teeth. But for long-lasting, dazzling results, it’s best to leave it to the professionals.
Consult your dentist today about which whitening option is best for you, and get ready to show off a beautiful, whiter smile!