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Teeth Whitening for Different Populations : Safe and Effective Treatment Approaches

  1. Introduction

    1.1 What is Teeth Whitening

    Teeth Whitening is a process through which a person with discolored or stained teeth can get rid of the stains and discoloration and get whiter teeth. It is a treatment that improves the aesthetic appearance of a person. Teeth Whitening involves use of various techniques and whitening products that break down the stain and discoloration to whiten the teeth [1].

    It is an extremely safe and effective way to improve the condition of the teeth. Teeth whitening plays an important role in enhancing the self-confidence of a person. However, not all techniques used in teeth whitening are suited for everyone. As an example, since teeth whitening involves use of chemicals it may not be suited for the aged or people with dental restorations [1].

    1.2 Purpose of The Article

    The aim of this article is to highlight the use of teeth whitening for specific set of population and also explore the safety, importance, and the best treatment approaches for teens and young adults, pregnant and nursing females, the elderly, and people who have had dental restorations individually and in detail.

    By the end of the article the reader should be in a position to make a concerted decision on whether to proceed with teeth whitening and what precautions to take if they come under the bracket mentioned above.

  2. Teeth Whitening for Specific Populations

    2.1 Teens and Young Adults

    It is not uncommon for teens and young adults both boys and girls to be aware and be sensitive about how they look as they tend to spend most of the time out of the home environment. In this situation if they have stained or discolored teeth it brings fear in them of being ridiculed by their peers. It generally happens due to lifestyle habits like excessive drinking of coffee and smoking [2].

    The American Dental Association recommends that it is better that teeth whitening procedure should be avoided in people below the age of 18 unless it is done under the supervision of a dentist to avoid any potential risk of side effects or damage to their teeth. Otherwise, for teens and young adults, teeth whitening is quite a safe procedure to go through [2].

    However, it is always better to consult a dentist before going ahead with teeth whitening for a comprehensive evaluation of their dental condition and based on that the dentist decides as to which technique will be best for the patient like an in-office bleaching treatment or custom fitted whitening trays. It is best to avoid over the counter whitening products like strips or chewing gum ad as they may cause damage to the enamel or cause irritation to the gums [2].

    2.2 Pregnant and Nursing Women

    1. Why Pregnant and Nursing females Show Interest in Teeth Whitening

      When a female is pregnant or is nursing there are several hormonal changes that occur in the body. Some of these changes result teeth discoloration. This is the reason why these females opt for teeth whitening treatment. Additionally, some females become more self-conscious during and after pregnancy and tend to opt for teeth whitening treatment [3].

    2. Discussion About Safety of Teeth Whitening During Pregnancy and Nursing

      Although there is limited data about the safety of teeth whitening during pregnancy and even the American Dental Association has also not given any specific guidelines regarding safety of this treatment during pregnancy majority of dentist recommend against going for teeth whitening when a female is pregnant or during nursing [4].

      This is more as a precaution than anything else since the treatment involves use of chemicals and there may be a potential of harm to the developing baby or be transmitted to the nursing baby through breastmilk. It is best in such situations to consult with a dentist before going for teeth whitening treatment [4].

    3. What are the Safe Teeth Whitening Options for Pregnant and Nursing Women

      The best way to for pregnant and nursing females to keep the teeth white and glittering is to keep brushing and flossing the teeth regularly. It not only helps whiten the teeth and prevent further discoloration and staining but also enhances the oral hygiene [3].

      Another option is to use natural alternatives like baking soda or charcoal to clean the teeth and are considered safe during pregnancy and nursing. However, consulting the dentist should be the first choice before using any natural option as a mode for teeth whitening [3].

      Additionally, pregnant and nursing females can delay the teeth whitening treatment until after the pregnancy and when they are through with the breastfeeding process [3].

    2.3 Aging Populations

    1. Explanation of Why Aging Population Consider Teeth Whitening

      It is quite common for teeth to become discolored and stained as people age. This is due to lifestyle factors like tobacco use, alcohol, and caffeine. It can also be caused due to certain medications. For such people teeth whitening is just the perfect solution to get rid of the unsightly stains and discoloration [5].

    2. Discussion of Age-Related Dental Changes that Impact Teeth Whitening Options

      The options of teeth whitening in the elderly tend to be limited. This is because of the age-related changes that occur in the teeth. As a person changes it is quite common to see receding gums and eroded enamels. This is the reason why techniques normally used for teeth whitening tend to be not that effective in such age group and also increase the risks of side effects to the whitening products [5].

      It is recommended to consult a dentist to get the best advice with regard to the options available for teeth whitening in the elderly population keeping in mind the needs and preferences of the patient [5].

    3. Recommendations for Safe and Effective Teeth Whitening Options for Aging Populations

      Most dentists recommend in-office treatments for the elderly population where they can use special equipment and techniques for optimal results with minimal risks. Some dentists prescribe whitening products customized for the elderly with clear instructions on how to use with minimal risks of any side effects [6].

    2.4 Individuals with Dental Restorations

    1. Explanation of How Dental Restorations Can Impact Teeth Whitening Options

      Dental restorations like crowns, bridges, and fillings cannot be whitened with the traditional teeth whitening products as these products will make the restorations more pronounced and affect the overall appearance of the teeth [7].

    2. Discussion of Recommended Teeth Whitening Options for Individuals with Dental Restorations

      Even if traditional methods for teeth whitening cannot be used for people with dental restorations it certainly does not mean that teeth whitening cannot be done in such people. Dentist in such situations recommend use of alternative whitening methods like porcelain veneers or dental bonding to eve out the appearance of the teeth. Some dentist may also choose to replace the restoration so that they match with the whitened teeth and become less pronounced [8].

    3. Explanation of How to Maintain Dental Restorations While Whitening Teeth

      A person with a dental restoration needs to be careful when getting teeth whitening done to prevent the restoration from getting damaged. The best to manage this is to regularly consult with the dentist and follow the instructions. It is also recommended not to overuse whitening products to prevent both the restoration and the teeth from getting damaged [8].

  3. Conclusion

    Teeth Whitening is an extremely effective and safe method of getting rid of stains and discoloration from the teeth. While teeth whitening is safe for all age groups there are however certain scenarios where certain precautions need to be undertaken to prevent any unwarranted side effects or complications and the options that are available for teeth whitening [1].

    With regard to teens and younger population it is extremely important to choose the right treatment option for teeth whitening and the best way to do it is with the help of a dentist and following the recommendations as they are the best person to look at the condition of the teeth and provide the best technique for teeth whitening keeping in mind the needs and preferences of the patient [2].

    For pregnant and nursing females there is not enough data available but most dentist recommend against going for any form of teeth whitening when pregnant or while breastfeeding the baby to prevent any chemicals that are used in teeth whitening to harm the fetus or the baby during breastfeeding. For such females it is best to delay the treatment until they are done with the pregnancy and breastfeeding [3, 4].

    For the elderly the teeth whitening treatments are limited due to age related dental conditions like receding gums and worded enamels. A detailed explanation has been provided above for the options available for the elderly people when it comes to teeth whitening [5].

    For people who have had dental restorations the usual whitening treatments may not work as these products will not whiten the restorations. The bottom line is that it is best to consult with a dentist for the best available dental whitening option available have the best result from teeth whitening treatment [6, 7, 8].


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Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:April 13, 2023

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