Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic procedure offered at dental clinics these days and it’s only getting more common with modern improvements. But when did the bleaching trend begin and how was it done back in the day? If you’re thinking the nineties were the first time teeth whitening made its way to fame, think again. Here are some things you probably didn’t know about the procedure.
Smile Like An Egyptian
That’s right – early teeth whitening methods date back nearly 4,000 years ago. The Egyptians used a mixture of wine vinegar and grinded stone to whiten their pearly whites. The only problem was that the harsh mixture deteriorated tooth enamel and created other mouth health problems. The solution? To use their own urine.
This was thought up by the Romans some years later that discovered the ammonia found in pee was an effective way to whiten their teeth. Gross as it sounds, this is a truth fact, but very gross. After much trial and error through the Middle Ages, modern dentist finally found an effective way to do teeth whitening, but it wasn’t on purpose.
Sometimes Accidents Happen – For The Good
Today’s teeth whitening methods involve hydrogen peroxide, commonly used at dental clinics, and carbamide peroxide, which is a lesser concentrate used in at-home whitening kits. These chemicals were often used as a disease-fighting antiseptic for the gums and when dentists created a gel substance for longer wear, they noticed that patients’ teeth were also getting whitening – a win-win situation. Nowadays you can walk into just about any pharmacy and purchase whitening products that will help maintain your smile between visits to you dentist.
Not Every Tooth Can Be Whitened
For the most part whitening procedures can offer you a brighter and whiter smile, but not all whitening treatments are a one tooth fits all process. Sometimes a tooth is not as strong or has malformed tooth enamel and the teeth whitening process won’t be successful no matter how many procedures and attempts are made. This can be cause by an increased intake of fluoride as a child among many other things and can only be resolved by other dental procedures like dental veneers or crowns. (http://hollandcrossdental.com/cosmetic-dentistry/)
Keeping It Natural
Sometimes dental whitening procedures can be very harsh on your teeth and creates unwanted sensitivity between visits. There are, however, a few natural ways to whiten teeth at home that are slower and less harsh on your mouth. A mixture of baking soda and lemon juice, strawberries, salt and baking soda or a coconut oil rinse are all effective ways to brighten teeth. Each method can be applied with a tooth brush and should not be used on a regular basis.