When it comes to teeth whitening for kids, there is a completely different standard compared to what can be used to whiten the teeth of an adult. For example, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends staying away from whitening strips when it comes to improving the appearance of a person's teeth.
Theirs is still a lot of research left to do, but the data gathered so far indicates whitening strips are not safe for anyone under the age of 15. While bleaching strips are completely out of the picture when it comes to improving the way a child's teeth look, there are many other things that can be done to give your child whiter, brighter teeth.
Safe ways to perform teeth whitening for kids
1. Stay away from strips
As was mentioned earlier, whitening strips are not recommended when it comes to whitening a child's teeth. There is not enough data to evaluate how the bleaching agents in them affect developing enamel, and kids are more likely to misuse them. Many of these products contain hydrogen peroxide, which can damage a child's teeth. These strips are also a choking hazard for younger children.
2. Practice good oral hygiene
Taking good care of a child's teeth helps to improve their appearance. Brushing and flossing regularly helps to remove the stains and discoloration that build up on teeth over time. Brushing also removes plaque from teeth surfaces and plaque will eventually turn into tartar if left on a person's teeth for prolonged periods. Tartar is calcified plaque and it gives a person's teeth a yellowish color.
3. Protect the enamel
One of the common reasons why a person's teeth might become discolored is because their enamel has been worn thin. Protect the child's enamel by avoiding things that can damage it like sugary drinks and snacks. Encourage the child to drink more water instead of sodas and juices.
4. Avoid things that stain teeth
There are certain foods and drinks that can stain a child's smile. Foods like tomato sauce and berries can lead to serious discoloration if the child consumes them regularly. Encourage the child to avoid these items when possible. If the child is insistent on having something that will stain their teeth, encourage them to use a straw to minimize the effects.
5. Use teeth whitening toothpaste
There are many toothpaste brands and other oral hygiene products that contain whitening agents. Find something that has the American Dental Association's seal of approval and use it to brush the child's teeth twice each day. Products that contain a combination of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide are known to be quite effective.
6. Get regular teeth cleanings
Professional teeth cleanings get rid of the surface stains and discoloration that has built up on a person's teeth. It is also the only way to remove tartar from teeth surfaces. The dentist will often perform a fluoride treatment if the patient's teeth enamel is weakened.
Want to whiten your child's teeth, start by scheduling a dental cleaning with one of our dentists today.
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A dental professional will help advise you on teeth whitening for kids. They can educate you and your children about proper oral care, including how to do it and why it is important.
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