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Your smile says a lot about you—a good smile is a winning attribute for a job interview, a date or top-notch customer service. If you want your smile to look its best, you’ll need shiny, white teeth to show off.
Keeping your teeth white is predominately achieved by good hygiene, but sometimes brushing and flossing and fussing. Your genetics, choice of food and drink and oral hygiene practice all contribute to whether your teeth will stay white or turn an unappealing shade of yellow.
This is where teeth whitening is a perfect solution. There are a few ways to whiten your teeth, ranging from at-home kits, to DIY methods and professional visits. What’s best for your budget?
Effectiveness: Moderately effective, takes time and regular upkeep
When money is a rather large and immovable obstacle, DIY methods are often the best solution because you can put something together with what you have around the home. Here’s one great teeth-whitening solution using a few ingredients you probably have in your cupboard or fridge!
Combine several teaspoons of baking soda with enough lemon juice to form a paste and put the mixture into small bowl. Just like brushing your teeth with toothpaste, smear the mixture onto your toothbrush scrub your teeth. Bicarb soda is an alkaline mineral which can balance out the Ph levels and reduce acidity—this is especially useful if you tend to eat a lot of acidic foods.
At home kits
Cost: Moderately expensive
Effectiveness: Works well, most require regular upkeep
If you have a little more to spend, there are plenty of at home teeth-whitening kits which are safe and reasonably priced. Ranging from around $50 to $100 AU, kits often require daily use for a few weeks to a month, but the results are guaranteed.
Try whitening toothpaste, which has ingredients that remove surface stains; gel strips, which you wear for 2 hours daily or spend more for premium kits which include LED lights, gel syringes and whitening pens.
Professional in-office cleaning
Cost: Most expensive
Effectiveness: Most effective, quickest results
There are many advantages to professional teeth bleaching in a dentist’s office. Usually only one session is required and the results can last for several years. It’s also the safest option, because your mouth is in the hands of a professional. The only downside is the cost, which can reach upwards of $500 to $600 AU, depending on the procedure and your dentist.
One of the most popular procedures today is ‘Zoom tooth whitening’. A Zoom session takes less than an hour, with three applications of Zoom whitening gel applied every 15 minutes by your dentist. The whitening gel penetrates the enamel and bleaches stains from inside the tooth, without changing its overall structure. It is generally agreed to be a very effective procedure.
Teeth whitening is a huge industry, as the many procedures have become more popular over the years. It is no longer a luxury reserved for movie stars and high-ranking politicians—you can have shiny, pearly whites in one session or with regular applications at home.
Be sure to read the instructions and safety tips of any kit you buy and to take into consideration how much you’re willing to spend. Your beautiful teeth shouldn’t put you out on the street!