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5 Things to Know About Teeth Whitening

Female patient in dental office receiving Tooth Whitening drying procedure.

Female patient in dental office receiving Tooth Whitening drying procedure.

1. There are many effective methods

Today’s tooth bleaching materials are composed primarily of either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. Many whitening techniques have proven to be effective, although results vary depending on the type of stain, type of bleaching product and other factors.

2. Different shades yield different results

Certain stains respond better to bleaching than others. Whitening products work the best on teeth with a yellowish color. Brown staining doesn’t respond quite as well. Teeth with a grayish or purple color are typically the most difficult to whiten.

3. You’ll repeat the process

Tooth whitening is not permanent. Depending on the foods and beverages you consume, the shade will begin to fade in as little as a month. The more you can avoid those offending foods and drinks, the longer you can postpone your next treatment.   Press here to read about Brenda’s tooth whitening story?

4. It can be a little irritating

The two most common side effects are an increase in tooth sensitivity and irritation of the gums, but both conditions are only temporary.

5. Your dentist can help

While chances of serious complications are low, the American Dental Association recommends that patients consult their dentist before beginning any whitening program, especially those with sensitive teeth, dark stains, and dental restorations.



  1. http://www.ada.org/~/media/ADA/About%20the%20ADA/Files/ada_house_of_delegates_whitening_report.ashx
  2. http://www.ada.org/en/about-the-ada/ada-positions-policies-and-statements/tooth-whitening-safety-and-effectiveness
  3. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments_and_procedures/hic_Effectiveness_Risks_Safety_and_Other_Frequently_Asked_Questions_About_Teeth_Whitening

This is not a complete list. Contact your Oral Care provider for additional information. 3M Oral Care does not provide dental advice, diagnosis or treatment. See Additional Information

The contents of the 3M™ Oral Care Marketing Program, such as text, graphics, images, and other material are for informational purposes only. The contents are not intended to be a substitute for professional dental or medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a dental or medical health condition, diagnosis and/or treatment, including your specific dental/medical needs.

Norman Medina DDS
Norman Medina DDS

Norman Medina DDS, graduated from Loma Linda University Dental School in 1994. He has been practicing dentistry in Midcoast Maine since 1994. He and his wife Lanita have four children.

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