A Guide to Selecting an OTC Whitening Toothpaste
Having healthy teeth while keeping them white can be tricky. Your teeth can become yellowish from a number of factors. It could be from certain foods and drink in your diet. Certain medications can also make your teeth’s enamel become discolored. And age is also a factor since the enamel tends to wear down with age. There are lots of products that can help make your teeth whiter, such as teeth whitening kits or teeth whitening strips. But there is also over-the-counter whitening toothpaste that can help you maintain proper oral hygiene while removing any stains or yellowing.
We’ll discover several toothpaste formulas for whiter teeth that are safe to use. Some have all-natural ingredients and use things like activated charcoal to remove stain-causing residue. Others use common ingredients like baking soda or hydrogen peroxide. And yet others try to address other issues as well, such as sensitive gums.
We’ll look over some of the options in the Best Reviews Guide list of the best OTC whitening toothpaste. You’re almost certain to be able to find the right product for whiter, healthy teeth!
What causes teeth to become yellowish?
There are a number of factors that can stain your teeth:
Beverages: Regularly drinking red wine, coffee, tea, and cola can cause discolored teeth.
Tobacco use: Cigarette smoking or chewing tobacco is known to stain your teeth over time.
Neglecting oral hygiene: If you don’t brush and floss your teeth regularly, it can allow food stains to accumulate.
Medications: Surprisingly, certain mouthwashes can contain ingredients that stain teeth. Also, antibiotics, antihistamines, and blood pressure medication can discolor your teeth.
Aging: Enamel, the white outer coating of your teeth, wears down over time. This exposes the dentin underneath, which is yellowish. As a result, your teeth can look darker as you age, and you’ll have to compensate for that.
How do whitening toothpastes work?
Some whitening toothpaste uses activated charcoal. If you haven’t brushed your teeth for a while, your tongue can feel a rough layer of plaque on your teeth. If you apply activated charcoal to your teeth, it will attach to plaques and food-staining particles on the surface of your teeth. You can then rinse off the charcoal, and brush your teeth with toothpaste as usual. The activated charcoal with the toothpaste will make your teeth noticeably whiter.
Some whitening toothpaste contains hydrogen peroxide, which is capable of penetrating into the tooth enamel to break down molecules that cause discoloration. Hydrogen peroxide is frequently used in whitening kits that use UV light to break down these stain-causing molecules.
Another common ingredient in whitening toothpaste is baking soda. It is mildly abrasive and removes food residue and bacteria that cause staining and bad breath. Also, the fact that baking soda is alkaline means that it will neutralize staining due to acidic drinks, such as coffee, tea, or wine.
Types of Otc Whitening Toothpaste
You’ll see a number of toothpaste formulas that specialize in either removing food stains or neutralizing them. Here are some of the options:
Charcoal-activated toothpaste: We mentioned how activated charcoal removes plaque and food particles from your teeth. One whitening toothpaste based on activated charcoal is the Cali White Fluoride-Free Natural Whitening Toothpaste. It also contains coconut oil, which also helps remove plaque through the technique of “oil pulling”. It also has baking soda, diatomaceous earth, tea tree oil, and peppermint oil for a minty taste and fresh breath.
Cali White Fluoride-Free Natural Whitening Toothpaste
Fluoride & Hydrogen peroxide: Some toothpaste uses hydrogen peroxide, either together with cavity-fighting fluoride, as in the Colgate Optic White, or together with baking soda, as in the Colgate Baking Soda and Peroxide Whitening Toothpaste. Colgate says that their hydrogen peroxide & fluoride formula gets your teeth 10 times whiter after 4 weeks of use than fluoride toothpaste without hydrogen peroxide.
Colgate Optic White
Colgate Baking Soda and Peroxide Whitening Toothpaste
Crest also makes a whitening toothpaste with hydrogen peroxide and fluoride as its main ingredients, in their Crest 3D White Brilliance Hydrogen Peroxide Toothpaste with Fluoride. However, it has 4% hydrogen peroxide, which is the highest level permitted in an OTC toothpaste. They promise that you’ll start to see an improvement in as little as 3 days!
Crest 3D White Brilliance Hydrogen Peroxide Toothpaste with Fluoride
Concealing tooth foam: Another method of whitening teeth is to conceal any yellowing on the teeth. The Nolipem Purple Whitening Tooth Foam to correct yellow teeth. It can either be used as a mouthwash, or as toothpaste that you apply with a brush. The purple hue of the toothpaste neutralizes yellow, like in purple shampoo that eliminates brassy yellow tones in bleached hair.
Nolipem Purple Whitening Tooth Foam
Potassium nitrate: You’ll also see toothpaste that employs potassium nitrate in its formula. It has been proven to remove surface stains from teeth, as well as penetrate the teeth to protect nerves and reduce the sensitivity of teeth to extreme heat or cold. Sensodyne Extra Whitening Sensitive Teeth Whitening Toothpaste uses such a formula to both whiten teeth and reduce sensitivity. The makers of Sensodyne ensure less sensitivity in as little as 2 weeks!
Sensodyne Extra Whitening Sensitive Teeth Whitening Toothpaste
What reviewers say
Here are some customers’ impressions about the whitening toothpaste that they selected:
Sensitivity problems: One customer who bought the Crest 3D White Toothpaste said that it did a good job of whitening teeth. But, they noticed that the “Radiant Mint” flavor had a pleasant, cooling effect, while Crest’s “Artic Breeze” flavor was a bit too frigid for their tastes!
Better than whitening strips: One customer who overused whitening strips on his teeth for three years said that it damaged the enamel on his teeth. It also made his teeth very sensitive. But, Sensodyne’s formula enabled him to reduce his teeth’s sensitivity. Since these toothpaste brands are OTC, you won’t have to worry about overusing the toothpaste. Just brushing twice a day for two minutes at a time should suffice!
Here are some tips about using various OTC whitening toothpaste:
How fast can you expect results: You can see that different formulas and their techniques will achieve different rates of success. For example, since hydrogen peroxide whitens teeth, toothpaste that has a higher concentration will whiten teeth more quickly. Also, it will also depend on your diet and habits. As long as you stay away from foods that color your teeth, you should expect results in a few days of use.
Make sure that the treatment is safe for your enamel: Sometimes, it could be that you don’t have superficial staining, but that your tooth enamel is stained. If you want a treatment that can penetrate into the enamel to break up these staining residues, make certain that it won’t damage your enamel, or cause undue sensitivity.
Formulas that prevent staining: There are also some products that will not only remove stains but even prevent staining after you use them! For example, the Crest 3D White Brilliance Toothpaste guarantees noticeable stain removal in 5 days, and active stain prevention for up to 24 hours after using their toothpaste!
We went through some of the features of the best OTC whitening toothpaste brands. If used correctly, you should see a gradual whitening effect. And they don’t have the scary risks that accompany overusing whitening strips or kits that use UV light. Whether you want to remove food or tobacco stains, or just achieve whiter teeth, let the Best Reviews Guide choose the best-selling whitening toothpaste brands for you!