Commonly, children will notice that their permanent teeth don’t look as white as their baby teeth did. This, however, does not mean that your adult teeth are becoming yellow; baby teeth tend to be whiter than the permanent ones. It is normal for a child to desire pearly whites, especially if the parents are used to whitening their teeth. It could also be a case of the desire to increase their self-esteem or to simply enhance their looks. You might be asking yourself – is tooth whitening recommended for children and teens. Well, there are various factors to consider.
In some cases, teeth discoloration can lead to reduced quality of life for any particular person. A good example is a discoloration that is caused by a dead nerve; this can warrant tooth whitening. In addition, if the staining is brought about by injuries, medical treatments, and illnesses, tooth whitening for children or teens can be recommended.
Though it might seem like a simple procedure for a parent, the same cannot be said about tooth-whitening for children or even tooth-whitening for teens. So, is it recommended?
Whether you are thinking of taking your child to the orthodontist or buying a DIY kit, the best option is waiting until your child is older. Orthodontists recommend that you wait until the child is at least fourteen years of age before you can think of tooth-whitening for teens; this is, especially for those who prefer to do it at home. If possible, let your teenager reach seventeen as the procedure can leave their teeth overly sensitive.
You also run the risk of causing more problems when using the DIY kit as the products used for teeth whitening may cause injuries if not applied correctly. Most of what is known about the tooth-whitening procedures relate to grownups. It is, therefore, prudent to consult an orthodontist about tooth-whitening for children or teens.
Preventing Teeth Discoloration in Children and Teens
Teach your children proper oral hygiene where they brush their teeth at least twice every day. They shouldn’t brush too vigorously as this might damage the teeth. Also, advise them to always clean the tongue when brushing their teeth to ensure the stains from food remnants are not transferred to their teeth.
Advise them to avoid beverages that are known to stain teeth like soda, coffee, and tea. Keeping away from such will reduce the risk of teeth discoloration.
If they still want to drink the above beverages, make sure they brush their teeth afterward. This stops the staining properties from reaching the roots of their teeth.
Replace your children’s toothbrushes or the heads if they use electric ones every 2 to 3 months. Old toothbrushes tend to transfer bacteria to the mouth.
Encourage your children to use saline water from time to time. The salt in the water increases the mouth’s pH, which in turn, discourages bacteria from multiplying. It is also a disinfectant. Simply add a pinch of salt to a glass of warm water and stir to dissolve it. Let the toothbrush soak in the water before using it in the normal way.
Encourage natural teeth cleaning foods. These include the likes of carrots, celery, popcorn, and apples. They should eat them after meals to avoid having to brush every time they eat.
You can also start brushing with whitening toothpaste as a family. This is a gentler way of keeping teeth bright, unlike the common whitening procedures. It will help your children keep stains away also. However, if you are still asking – if tooth-whitening is recommended for children and teens, you should seek the services of a professional for additional information.
Teeth Whitening for Children and Teens
Nowadays, children also want to wear brighter smiles.
If your children still have their milk teeth, teeth whitening is not necessary, as the teeth will eventually fall out. In addition, whitening your kid’s teeth when they still have some baby teeth will lead to a disparity in color when all permanent teeth eventually erupt. However, if the discoloration is caused by medical reasons, the milk teeth can be whitened as an exception.
As stated earlier, teeth whitening in teens is only recommended once they are 14 years and above. There exist different whitening techniques, including homemade solutions and medical techniques. The former involves the use of baking soda and lemon juice paste, coconut oil rinse, salt, and baking soda scrub, among other things. In medical whitening, orthodontists use professional bleaching.
When tooth whitening involves children and teens, always consult an orthodontist to ensure it is necessary and safe. This is because children tend to have fragile enamels and some of the negative effects caused by these methods might be irreversible.
Tooth whitening toothpaste might cause tooth sensitivity in children since their enamels can be scrubbed away, leaving the dentin with tiny holes. It should, therefore, be avoided in small children. Teenagers should use ADA-approved whitening toothpaste.
If you are thinking about tooth- whitening for children, consult Beecroft Orthodontics now.
Is Tooth-Whitening Recommended [For Children & Teens]?