Removing Tooth Stains
Whether you'd like to remove extrinsic, intrinsic, or age-related stains, we've got you covered!
The items below work best for extrinsic stains. But if the product you buy contains hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide, it might work on intrinsic or age-related staining. Just be aware those ingredients might cause teeth sensitivity.
Also, some products combined with a LED light might be highly effective.
Whitening Toothpaste and Mouthwash: You already brush your teeth twice daily and use mouthwash daily. So, using these whitening products makes it easy to remove stains. Other things to know:
- Your teeth should become gradually whiter as the products lift off stains bit by bit day by day.
- Some toothpaste includes a powerful whitening ingredient to remove deep-set stains. Other toothpaste only gets rid of surface stains.
- If you use another quicker-acting teeth-bleaching product to take off stains (see below), you might consider using whitening toothpaste and/or mouthwash to keep your smile bright.
Tooth Whitening Gel: Available over-the-counter and in custom trays from your dentist, tooth whitening gels contain peroxide-based bleaching agents. Here's the scoop on them:
- Since the gel contains higher amounts of peroxide than whitening toothpaste, you'll need to use a tray, which usually comes with the gel.
- The trays help keep the gel in contact with your teeth only, not the rest of the inside of your mouth.
- Custom trays are usually more effective and better at protecting your gums, but they can be much more expensive than over-the-counter options.
Tooth Whitening Strips: This at-home method uses whitening gel but pre-applies it to strips for easy application without a tray. Be mindful that:
- Whitening strips can cause sensitivity if you opt for a product with high amounts of hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide.
- An over-the-counter product, whitening strips need extra care to wear. Follow the package directions and make sure you don't apply the strips over your gumline, as the strips' gel might irritate the gum tissue.
Whitening Pen: An excellent whitening solution for people on the go, a whitening pen fits in purses, pockets, and backpacks. You should know:
- It's quick and easy to apply a thin layer of whitening gel from the pen onto your teeth.
- You have more control over where the gel goes with a pen than you do with whitening strips.
- But the gel's bleaching agents aren't as powerful in a pen. No matter, convenience is key to a whitening pen.
If your teeth stains won't budge with an at-home whitening option, there is no need to worry! Talk to your dentist about professional in-office bleaching to remove deep stains from your teeth.
Although this method can be the most efficient way to whiten discolored teeth, it can also be the most expensive course of action. If the price tag of a professional treatment concerns you:
- Consider visiting a dental school for affordable dentistry.
- Check to see if your area has a low-cost dental clinic that offers whitening services.
Now that you know all the types of teeth stains and how to safely remove them, you're set to DIY at home or spend some quality time in your dentist's chair. Talk to your dental professional about what system is best for you. And be a star in your own life with a dazzling smile!