8 Things To Know About Whitening Your Teeth At Home

Have you looked in the mirror recently and wished that your teeth were a bit whiter? Have you thought that maybe all of your tea and coffee guzzling has made your once-white teeth take on a bit of a brown tinge? Has that made you consider whitening your teeth?

The good news is that you’re not restricted to going to the dentist for whiter teeth. Thankfully, there are lots of over-the-counter options that you can try that cost significantly less than a few professional whitening treatments would. Before you run to your nearest drugstore and stock up, I want you to consider some things.

First, I want you to remember that you do not have to whiten your teeth. Whatever color your teeth naturally are is beautiful. A blinding white, movie star smile is not something you need to have. That is one look. You shouldn’t feel pressured to get your teeth whitened. You should do it because you want to, not because you feel forced to.

If you genuinely do want to whiten your teeth, take a look at eight things to know about whitening your teeth at home.

The Results Aren't As Dramatic As Professional Ones

Obviously, the professionals are always going to have the most powerful formulas and tools. That's not to say that at-home teeth whitening kits are crap. They're actually very good. I just want to make sure that your expectations are in check. When done correctly and on a regular basis, you will notice a difference in your teeth when using at-home whitening treatments, but it will never be as dramatic as the results from pros. You should also be aware it will take several sessions to notice a change.

Image source: Instagram/FlreekTeethWhitening

There Are Different Methods

One of the big benefits about at-home whitening, besides its affordability, is the number of options. There are whitening toothpastes, powders, strips, treatments that you paint on, LED treatments, plus more. While the different choices might feel overwhelming, the good thing is that you can try a few different ones to see what one works best for you and your smile.

Image source: Instagram/dannettehyland

It's Essential That You Follow Instructions

It might seem obvious, but it needs to be said. At-home whitening treatments are not as powerful as professional ones, but you still need to follow them. You don't want to end up with uneven results and you don't want to irritate your teeth and gums. You also need to be careful because sometimes what you do before or after your treatment can impact the results. What's more, there is such thing as over-whitening and damaging teeth. It's rarer with at-home kits, but it can happen. Therefore, take five minutes and read the instructions before beginning.

Image source: Instagram/delitewhitening

It Can Lead To Gum And Mouth Sensitivity

Tooth and gum sensitivity are side effects of whitening teeth. After all, those whitening products are strong enough to change the color of teeth so you can see why there could be some sensitivity. Some at-home kits will recommend that you do tests or not use the products if you have certain sensitives or allergies. Make sure you listen to them so you don't wind up in a bind.

Image source: Instagram/tashaoxford33

It Can Make You Drool

This is a point that might make you choose one whitening method over another. If you're sensitive, you might find that you cannot control your drooling if you have white strips or whitening trays in your mouth. If that's the case, you might find that a whitening toothpaste will be the best option. There are ways you could get around it like focusing on not drooling or shoving a towel in your mouth, but that's obviously not the most pleasant experience.

Image source: Instagram/reikonohmi

It's Better For Some People Than Others

If you have braces, whitening is a no-no. If you have caps or veneers, they also cannot be whitened. If you have crowded, uneven, or large teeth, you might also have trouble with certain methods like whitening trays or strips as they can sometimes lead to uneven results. When you're considering a whitening method, it's important to read the tips to make sure it's suitable for your smile.

Image source: Instagram/shesquincey

You Have To Think About When To Brush Your Teeth

This will vary depending on the type of at-home whitening method you pick. For instance, some whitening strip instructions might tell you to not brush your teeth first whereas others will tell you to wait a few hours after brushing before applying the product. Then there are some treatments that will want you to brush your teeth first. If you're using a whitening toothpaste, you might need to apply one product first.

Image source: Instagram/novellydentistry

It Doesn't Last Forever

Sorry, but you don't whiten your teeth once and that's the end of things. You will need to keep doing it on a consistent basis if you want to maintain the results. The reason is that food and drinks will still discolor teeth. Secondly, teeth actually discolor as we get older so you also have to fight Mother Nature on this one.

Image source: Instagram/ginaaamaria

Have you ever tried whitening your teeth at home? Let us know in the comments!

You can follow the author, Heather Cichowski, on Twitter.


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