If you've decided to take a DIY route to whiten your teeth, you may be dazzled by the number of products you can buy in stores and online. While a home treatment may improve the whiteness of your smile, some products may not work as well as others. It's also important to make sure that you use a safe whitening treatment that isn't going to cause you any harm. What's the best way to find the best bleaching product?
Check the Peroxide Content
Many home whitening kits contain chemicals, such as peroxides, which can be dangerous in high doses. To combat this, according to CHOICE Australia, the Australian government has imposed limits on allowed levels of peroxide content for home whitening kits of 6% hydrogen peroxide and 18% carbamide peroxide. You shouldn't be able to buy any products which have higher levels than this in stores.
Tip: The low levels of peroxides in home whitening kits may not give you fantastic results with just one application. If you want to seriously whiten your smile, talk to your dentist. Dentists are allowed to use bleaching products with higher peroxide contents; some also offer home kits with a higher chemical concentration that you can use under their supervision.
Check the Expiry Date
Given that home whitening kits contain potentially toxic chemicals, you need to be careful that the contents of the kit you use are in the best shape. According to body+soul, you should check the expiry date on any bleaching gels or agents in a kit before you buy it. If you buy an out of date kit, the ingredients may have degraded and may be less safe to use.
Don't Buy Overseas Kits
Although it may be cheaper to buy home whitening kits online from overseas sellers, this is not a good idea. It may be tempting to save some money but you won't have any control over the contents of the kit.
Overseas companies don't have to meet the Australian regulations for peroxide content, and foreign kits may contain far higher doses that are not considered safe for home application. According to the Australian Department of Health, you should always make sure to buy from reputable Australian companies, making sure to double-check that the kit complies to peroxide standards before you buy.
Tip: If you can't decide which home whitening kit to buy, you can ask your dentist for advice on the best products to use. Although your dentist may try to persuade you to use professional whitening treatments, you should also be able to wheedle out an opinion on the better home kits to use.