07 Jul The History of Teeth Whitening
You may think that teeth whitening is a relatively new procedure. However, the practice of whitening teeth has been around for more than 4,000 years. White teeth have always been a mark of beauty and wealth, so it is no surprise that humans have been enamored with teeth whitening for centuries. Today we are going to take a look at the history of teeth whitening and how far the process has come.
History of Teeth Whitening: The Early Days
The first records of teeth whitening are from 4,000 years ago. Ancient Egyptians made a whitening paste out of pumice stone and wine vinegar. This mixture removed the particles and stains from teeth. Early civilizations didn’t brush their teeth. However, they did chew on sticks to remove plaque and particles.
Ancient Romans had a slightly more unsettling cure for discolored teeth. They would use urine. The ammonia in urine is a bleaching agent. Luckily for us, there are much more easy to stomach products on the market today.
During the 17th century, your barber was responsible for the health of your mouth. After a haircut, your barber would file your teeth and apply an acid to whiten them. However, this process led to the further decay of your teeth. The filing would remove the enamel on your teeth which are actually what makes your teeth white.
Fluoride was found to lead to healthier and whiter teeth in the 19th century. However, scientists also found that too much fluoride led to more discoloration of teeth.
History of Teeth Whitening: Recent Years
Like many other professions, dentistry has come a long way in recent years. Technological advancements have given dentists more options when it comes to teeth whitening. In recent years the history of teeth whitening has taken giant steps forward.
In the 1980’s whitening trays with ingredients like peroxide became all the rage. Dentists fell into the discovery that peroxide could whiten teeth. Peroxide was an antiseptic gel to treat the gums. What dentists found is that peroxide also had a wonderful side effect, whiter teeth. Shortly there after the mass marketing of teeth whitening products ensued.
Today you can find a wide range of at-home whitening products. These products range from peroxide toothpaste to gel that you place on a tray and leave on your teeth. The best part is that they work for a lot of people. Usually, people see results in two weeks. However, not every person’s teeth are the same. Some people have stains that are more difficult to remove and require special attention.
History of Teeth Whitening: Present Day
Teeth whitening procedures have come a long way since urine and filing were the norms. The new treatments include advanced whitening gels and lasers. Yes, you read that right, lasers are now an effective way to whiten your teeth.
The latest advancement in whitening gels is a product known as Kor. This product combines a highly effective peroxide gel and a scientifically proven application method. The application process keeps the gel on the teeth as well as keeping saliva out. This allows the gel to work in the best possible conditions.
There are two new types of treatment that don’t use only the traditional whitening gels. These procedures involve the use of either LED lights or lasers. These lights or lasers activate whitening gels that your dentist applies to your teeth. These products have also shown their effectiveness. If you are unsure of what whitening product is best for your situation, consult your dentist. Your dentist can help guide you in the right direction.
Is Teeth Whitening Right for Everyone?
Teeth whitening products are great for people with stained teeth. However, sometimes worn down enamel is the cause of teeth discoloration. The pulp of your teeth is a darker color and the more enamel you lose, the more the pulp shows through. Unfortunately, if you have worn down the enamel on your teeth, traditional whitening products may not work for you.
Teeth whitening fixes these common causes of stains:
- Coffee or soda
- Discoloration from medication
If you have discoloration from one of these causes, whitening can help. Schedule an appointment with Tower Dental Group today and get back that healthy happy smile. Tower Dental offers a full range of whitening treatments and can help you achieve your dental goals.