Gleaming white teeth signal youth and vitality to many people. But as we age or consume products like tobacco or caffeine that can stain tooth surfaces, our teeth may look yellowish and dingy. Although using hydrogen peroxide products or home mixtures may cause tooth sensitivity, you can safely use commercially-available hydrogen peroxide products or a home hydrogen peroxide mixture to whiten your teeth.
Using Commercially-Available Whiteners
1. Brush with a whitening toothpaste. Purchase a whitening toothpaste with hydrogen peroxide at your local pharmacy or grocery store. Brush with the product at least twice daily for at least one month to see results.
2. Place gel-filled trays on your teeth. There is some evidence that gel-filled trays with a 3% hydrogen peroxide gel can significantly whiten teeth. Buy an over-the-counter gel tray or have your dentist prescribe one.
3. Apply whitening strips. Whitening strips are similar to trays but are more flexible and come with the peroxide solution already on the product. Apply whitening strips to your teeth if you want a pre-filled treatment that is flexible and doesn’t necessarily touch your gums, which can be sensitive to peroxide.
4. Use a brush-on gel. Some companies offer hydrogen peroxide whiteners that you can brush or paint on your teeth. These products come in different forms such as a pen or bottle of solution with brush.
5. Consider a professional bleaching treatment. Dentists offer professionally applied hydrogen peroxide treatments used in conjunction with light or laser. Consider this option if you have very stained teeth or if you prefer to whiten with peroxide under a doctor’s supervision.
Trying Natural Peroxide Whiteners
1. Be aware of the risks of using hydrogen peroxide. There is conflicting consensus about the use of hydrogen peroxide in non-commercial products to whiten teeth. Using non-tested mixtures with hydrogen peroxide on your teeth can cause oral sensitivity and other abnormalities on your gums.
2. Swish with a hydrogen peroxide mouthwash. There is some evidence that rinsing with a hydrogen peroxide and water mouthwash can be safe when used over a longer period of time.
3. Make a hydrogen peroxide and baking soda paste. Using a paste of hydrogen peroxide and baking soda can whiten your teeth and soothe sore gums. Brush with the paste daily or use it a couple of times a week like a mask.
4. Prevent staining if possible. In addition to using your natural products, avoid anything that might stain your teeth if you can. Brushing or rinsing right after you consume them may help reduce staining.