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Teeth Whitening for Teens? Here’s What to Know First

Tuesday - September 20th, 2016
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If you have a teenager, you may know they can be very sensitive about their appearance. Yellow or discolored teeth can have a huge impact on self-esteem, but at what age is it acceptable to start using teeth whitening products? Here are some do’s and don’ts if you have teenagers that want to whiten their teeth.

DON’T use at-home whitening treatments for children under the age of 13. Most dental professionals recommend waiting until age 14 or 15 before whitening teeth. Consult your dentist before trying at-home methods.

DO consult with your teen’s dentist before trying whitening products, and consider an in-office whitening treatment, which is typically faster and more effective. Your dentist can assess whether there are dental issues to resolve prior to whitening, such as cavities or enamel erosion. Let the dentist know if your teen has other oral issues like dry mouth, asthma, mouth breathing, or teeth grinding.

DO talk to your kids before starting any whitening regimens to make sure they have realistic expectations for the results. Teens can be impatient and expect immediate results, which can lead them to abuse and overuse whitening products. Overusing whiting products can result in intense tooth sensitivity.

DON�T rely on whitening toothpastes alone to get drastic results. Whitening toothpastes can be effective for removing surface stains from teeth. While you may see some results, they won’t be the same as procedures that whiten teeth by penetrating the enamel.

DO talk to your kids about how to avoid yellowing teeth. Limiting consumption of teeth strainers (like soda, coffee, color-laden candies), not smoking, and keeping up good oral health can help their teeth stay bright.