If you are a teeth whitening brand, you might be interested in knowing more about the ingredients that go into teeth whitening gels. After all, these are the products that you are selling to your customers, and you want to make sure they are safe, effective, and compliant with the regulations.
In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide to teeth whitening gel ingredients. Let’s dive in!
What are teeth whitening gels and how do they work?
Teeth whitening gels are solutions that contain a bleaching ingredient that can whiten the color of your teeth by breaking down the stains and discolorations on the enamel and dentin layers. These stains can be caused by various factors, such as aging, smoking, drinking coffee, tea, wine, or other colored beverages, taking certain medications, or having poor oral hygiene.
- Brushing them onto your teeth with a toothbrush or a pen-like applicator
- Inserting them into custom-made or universal trays that fit over your teeth
- Applying them as strips that adhere to your teeth
- Spraying them onto your teeth with a spray bottle or a syringe
The duration and frequency of using teeth whitening gels vary depending on the product and the desired results. Some products may require only one or two applications per day for a few days or weeks, while others may require multiple applications per day for several months. The instructions for each product should be followed carefully to avoid overuse or misuse.
What are the main types of whitening agents used in teeth whitening gels?
The most common whitening agents used in teeth whitening gels are carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide. These are oxidizing agents that penetrate the enamel and dentin layers of your teeth and interact with the stain molecules, disrupting their chemical bonds and making them less visible.
Carbamide peroxide is a compound that contains hydrogen peroxide and urea. When it comes into contact with water or saliva, it breaks down into hydrogen peroxide and urea. The hydrogen peroxide then acts as the bleaching agent, while the urea acts as a stabilizer and a buffer.
Hydrogen peroxide is a simpler compound that does not need to break down before it can whiten your teeth. It is more potent than carbamide peroxide, but it also has a shorter shelf life and may cause more sensitivity or irritation.
The concentration of carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide in teeth whitening gels can range from 5% to 40%, depending on the product and the intended use. Generally speaking, higher concentrations can produce faster and more noticeable results, but they also carry more risks of side effects, such as tooth sensitivity, gum irritation, enamel damage, or uneven whitening.
Therefore, it is important to follow the guidelines and regulations for using these whitening agents safely and effectively. In the US, for example, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates these products as cosmetics and does not approve them as drugs. However, the American Dental Association (ADA) has issued some recommendations for using these products safely and effectively.
According to the ADA, carbamide peroxide concentrations up to 10% (equivalent to 3.5% hydrogen peroxide) are considered safe for over-the-counter use by consumers without supervision by a dentist. However, carbamide peroxide concentrations above 10% (equivalent to 3.5% hydrogen peroxide) should only be used under the supervision of a dentist.
Similarly, hydrogen peroxide concentrations up to 3.5% are considered safe for over-the-counter use by consumers without supervision by a dentist. However, hydrogen peroxide concentrations above 3.5% should only be used under the supervision of a dentist.
What are the other ingredients that are added to teeth whitening gels and what are their functions?
Besides carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide, teeth whitening gels may contain other ingredients that serve various purposes, such as:
- Glycerin: A thickener and humectant that controls the flow and consistency of the gel and prevents it from drying out or spreading too much on the gums.
- Carbomer: A thickener and stabilizer that helps maintain the viscosity and homogeneity of the gel.
- Propylene glycol: A solvent and humectant that helps dissolve and retain moisture in the gel.
- Deionized water: A solvent and diluent that helps adjust the concentration and pH of the gel.
- Triethanolamine: A pH adjuster and buffer that helps neutralize the acidity of the gel and prevent enamel erosion.
- Polyvinylpyrrolidone: A binder and film-former that helps adhere the gel to the teeth and prevent saliva from washing it away.
- Menthol: A flavoring agent that adds a minty taste and sensation to the gel.
- EDTA: A chelating agent that helps remove surface proteins and bacteria debris from the teeth and create an ideal environment for the bleaching process.
These ingredients may vary in their amounts and proportions depending on the product formulation and manufacturer. Some products may also contain additional ingredients such as:
- Potassium nitrate: A desensitizing agent that helps reduce tooth sensitivity by blocking nerve impulses in the dentin tubules.
- Sodium fluoride: A remineralizing agent that helps strengthen enamel by forming fluorapatite crystals on its surface.
- Hydroxyapatite: A remineralizing agent that helps restore enamel by mimicking its natural structure and composition.
- Xylitol: A sweetener and anticariogenic agent that helps prevent tooth decay by inhibiting bacterial growth and acid production in plaque.
- Aloe vera: An anti-inflammatory and soothing agent that helps reduce gum irritation by moisturizing and healing damaged tissues.
- Chamomile: An anti-inflammatory and soothing agent that helps reduce gum irritation by calming inflammation and redness.
- Vitamin E: An antioxidant and moisturizing agent that helps protect cells from oxidative stress and damage caused by free radicals.
What are the benefits and risks of using teeth whitening gels?
Using teeth whitening gels can have several benefits for your smile, such as:
- Improving your appearance by making your teeth look brighter and cleaner
- Enhancing your confidence by making you feel more attractive and positive
- Boosting your oral health by motivating you to maintain good oral hygiene habits and prevent further staining
However, using teeth whitening gels can also have some risks or drawbacks, such as:
- Causing tooth sensitivity or gum irritation due to exposure to high concentrations of bleaching agents or prolonged contact with soft tissues
- Damaging enamel or dentin due to overuse or misuse of bleaching agents or improper application methods
- Producing uneven or unnatural results due to variations in tooth color or shape or existing dental restorations
- Interfering with other dental treatments or medications due to possible interactions or contraindications
Therefore, it is important to consult with your dentist before using any teeth whitening gel product. Your dentist can assess your oral health condition, determine your suitability for whitening treatment, recommend the best product for your needs, monitor your progress, address any issues or concerns you may have along the way.
How can you choose the best teeth whitening gel for your brand?
As a teeth whitening brand, you want to offer your customers high-quality products that can deliver effective results safely. Therefore, when choosing a teeth whitening gel for your brand, you should consider several factors such as:
- The type and concentration of bleaching agent: You should choose a bleaching agent that is suitable for your target market segment (e.g., professional vs consumer use), compliant with relevant regulations (e.g., FDA vs ADA guidelines), proven by scientific evidence (e.g., clinical trials vs anecdotal reports), compatible with other ingredients (e.g., stabilizers vs activators), preferred by customers (e.g., carbamide vs hydrogen peroxide).
- The other ingredients in the formulation: You should choose ingredients that complement the bleaching agent’s function (e.g., thickeners vs solvents), enhance its performance (e.g., desensitizers vs remineralizers), improve its safety (e.g., buffers vs chelators), add value to its features (e.g., flavorings vs antioxidants), meet customer expectations (e.g., natural vs synthetic).
- The method of delivery: You should choose a delivery method that matches the bleaching agent’s characteristics (e.g., trays vs strips), maximizes its efficacy (e.g., contact time vs coverage area), minimizes its side effects (e.g., leakage vs adherence), facilitates its application (e.g., convenience vs precision), satisfies customer preferences (e.g., comfort vs control).
To help you make an informed decision about choosing a teeth whitening gel for your brand, you can also consult with experts in this field such as:
- Dentists: They can provide you with professional advice and feedback on the safety and efficacy of different teeth whitening gel products, as well as the best practices and protocols for using them. They can also help you test and evaluate your products on real patients and monitor their outcomes and satisfaction.
- Chemists: They can help you formulate and manufacture your teeth whitening gel products according to the highest standards of quality and compliance. They can also help you optimize and customize your products according to your specifications and preferences, as well as troubleshoot any issues or challenges that may arise during the production process.
- Marketers: They can help you promote and sell your teeth whitening gel products to your target audience and differentiate them from your competitors. They can also help you conduct market research and analysis to identify the needs and expectations of your customers, as well as the trends and opportunities in the industry.
By choosing a teeth whitening gel product that meets the criteria and considerations mentioned above, you can ensure that you are offering your customers a high-quality product that can deliver effective results safely. You can also establish your reputation and credibility as a teeth whitening brand that cares about its customers’ oral health and satisfaction.
Teeth whitening gel ingredients are an important aspect of any teeth whitening product, as they determine its performance, safety, and features. As a teeth whitening brand, you should be well-informed about the different types of ingredients that go into teeth whitening gels, their functions, benefits, risks, and regulations.
We hope that this article has helped you gain a better understanding of teeth whitening gel ingredients and how to choose the best product for your brand. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us. We would love to hear from you!