Most of the teeth whitening procedures and treatments use peroxide as the bleaching agent to bleach the teeth. The active ingredient for any teeth whitening product is peroxide. In-office teeth whitening use carbamide peroxide teeth whitening bleaching agent while at-home whitening kits and products use hydrogen peroxide bleaching agents.
Both are same compounds and therefore do bleaching work similarly. Most of the mouth trays and whitening strips use hydrogen peroxide to whiten teeth. Dentist usually uses carbamide peroxide to whiten teeth initially. Later a dilute solution or lower concentrations of hydrogen peroxide is used.
What is the difference between hydrogen and carbamide peroxide?
Hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide are chemically similar. Both the chemicals break down and allow the entry of oxygen in the enamel and dentin. High concentrations of carbamide peroxide are converted to lower concentration of hydrogen peroxide. Therefore, hydrogen is a milder and dilute form of carbamide peroxide.
Which peroxide is better?
Carbamide peroxide is more stable and gives longer life. It also gives faster whitening result than hydrogen peroxide because of its higher strength. Dentist mostly uses carbamide bleaching agent to remove stains. However, incorrect use of carbamide can be harmful to the enamel and gums.
What percentage of carbamide peroxide is good?
The strength of the solution can vary depending on the product. The normal concentration is 3%. However, it can have the highest concentration of about 35%. High concentrations are used only in the in-office whitening treatments by the dentist. At-home whitening kits have lesser concentrations. This is because higher concentrations are bit risky when used at home.
Stronger and powerful carbamide peroxide teeth whitening agents can give better whitened teeth at a faster time period but they can be dangerous if swallowed accidentally. High concentrations can even erode the enamel and make your teeth and gums sensitive. Eroded enamel will make your teeth dull and remove away the luster of your teeth. Moreover, higher concentrations can cause irritation of your gums and may even burn your lips and mouth tissues.
Therefore, it is very important to check the concentration of carbamide peroxide before purchasing any teeth whitening products from the market or drug store. Always start with lower concentrations if you don’t want to damage your enamel.
Precautions and care:
- Whitening products and gels should contain low concentrations of carbamide peroxide as their bleaching agent.
- Never overuse the product. Always follow the instructions and use it correctly.
- Mouth trays and strips contain hydrogen peroxides. Care should be taken while using these at-home products.
- Never over- fill the trays with carbamide peroxide. Excess solution can spill out from the tray and cause chemical burns. Sometimes there is a chance of getting swallowed.
- Teeth whitening products containing peroxide should not be used frequently. Frequent use can damage your enamel and dentin too. If enamel is eroded, it will increase your risk of sensitivity and gum diseases as well.
- Use carbamide peroxide teeth whitening products and gels under the supervision of the dentist. Refer your dentist first before using any of these products.
Carbamide peroxide is an effective teeth whitening agent which can remove any hard stains from inside of the tooth enamel. It can give you long-lasting result and it is very safe and has no side-effects when used correctly.
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