According to the Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA), tooth color is the most common reason for patients to be dissatisfied with their teeth. Fortunately, tooth whitening is easier, more accessible and more effective than ever, with a wealth of options for those looking to brighten their smile. However, some whitening methods are not without their risks. In this article, we discuss how dental hygienists can manage those risks and give their patients the best possible esthetic results.
In recent years, the number of options for tooth whitening has exploded. In addition to in-office bleaching and over-the-counter whitening solutions like toothpastes, strips and gels, patients can now choose professional-grade, take-home whitening treatments to use in the comfort of their own homes. These have been found to be just as effective as those administered in-office, when used appropriately.
Given the relative ease and affordability of whitening compared to other esthetic procedures, it represents an accessible way for patients to give their confidence a boost. Research supports this, showing that tooth whitening can have a significant positive effect on the patient’s self-perception, oral health-related quality of life, and psychological well-being.
However, we should also be mindful of the potential side effects. The American Dental Association (ADA) states that sensitivity is common with tray-based whitening treatments, particularly when concentrations of the active agent are higher. Another risk is gingival irritation, typically caused by ill-fitting trays or improper gel placement (or in the case of in-office products, poor application of the gingival barrier material). Both side effects typically resolve quickly if they do occur.
However, with the right whitening product, administered by a professional and used as directed, great results can be achieved with minimal or no discomfort. Colgate Optic White Professional Take-Home Kit was developed to help dental professionals and patients do just that.
Colgate Optic White Professional is a take-home whitening kit that combines dramatic, high-impact whitening with safety, convenience and comfort. It is also designed for no tooth sensitivity and no gingival irritation. The kit contains a pen with a 6% hydrogen peroxide in a quick-dry serum formulation. The no-mess application using the pen offers precise application. After applying it, the serum rapidly dries, leaving a smooth, thin solid film that is not washed off by water or saliva and the hydrogen peroxide in the film penetrates the enamel to whiten the teeth. After the serum has dried, the patient simply wears a high-energy LED light device for just 10 minutes, then removes it, sleeps for the night and then brushes off the dried-on film during toothbrushing in the morning. The short-wavelength (410 nm) device provides higher energy for faster whitening. While research indicates that whitening treatments typically takes up to six weeks of use to give satisfactory results, the new Colgate Optic White Professional Take-Home Kit creates a brighter smile in just five days.
All in all, you can give your patients the best of both worlds: rapid and effective whitening, convenience, and a product designed for no sensitivity. All achieved in the comfort of their home!