There’s a reason we refer to great smiles as “showin’ your pearly whites.”
In fact, the popular writer Malcolm Gladwell wrote that good teeth were the new distinguisher of social class.
With the teeth industry booming, you might be interested in knowing what the safest and most effective way to whiten your teeth is.
<h2>To Bleach or Not to Bleach?</h2>
There are actually two types of tooth whitening techniques. There are whitening techniques, and there are bleaching techniques.
What’s the difference?
Whitening techniques use purely mechanical methods, while bleaching techniques use chemical methods.
The first only removes extrinsic stains, while the latter can remove both extrinsic and intrinsic stains.
Before you reach for the chemicals, you should know that the jury’s still out on whether bleaching is completely harmless for your teeth.
Some research suggests it’s perfectly safe, while other research suggests it could damage enamel and cause tooth hypersensitivity.
<h2>Remove Those Surface Stains With Abrasives</h2>
One of the best mechanical methods to remove stains is abrasives – ingredients that literally scrub the stains off.
Unfortunately, these can also wear on enamel, especially if you use rough brushing technique.
Thankfully, there’s actually a metric that can help us out. Relative Dentin Abrasivity (RDA) tells us how powerful or, rough an ingredient is. The scores go from 0 to 269.
Another metric, called pellicle cleaning ratio (PCR), tells us how effectively the product removes stains.
Typically, RDA and PCR go hand in hand. But some ingredients have a better ratio of the two metrics, leading to another and more directly useful metric: the Cleaning Efficiency Index (CEI.)
On a scale of 1 to 100, products were rated on their bang for their buck.
Amazingly, one product managed to score a whopping 98 on the index: white kaolin clay, a sort of teeth whitening miracle substance with low abrasivitity and high cleaning value.
Want to know the full gamut of tooth cleaning products? Call a local dentist in your area today.