When regular brushing and flossing don’t whiten your teeth, the idea of simply painting over stained or discolored tooth enamel is appealing. However, while tooth paint might seem like a quick and easy fix for yellow or stained teeth, the jury is still out on its effectiveness.
If your teeth are naturally yellow or gray or stained from strongly colored foods and drinks, they need special treatment to lighten the enamel. To effectively make teeth whiter, most teeth whitening products contain bleaching ingredients like hydrogen peroxide. The patient or dentist applies the whitening gel to the teeth, and the bleaching chemicals penetrate the tooth enamel. After a waiting period, the bleach breaks up stain molecules so that they’re no longer visible and the teeth look whiter.
What Is Tooth Paint?
Cosmetic paint for teeth isn’t like other tooth whitening products because it only makes teeth appear whiter, and the effect only lasts for a short while. Tooth paint is a little like nail polish. Rather than penetrating the tooth enamel, it coats the teeth and temporarily covers up stains and discoloration. The user first dries the teeth he or she wants to whiten, then applies the product with a small brush. When the paint is dry, the user can close his or her lips and proceed with the day.
Does Tooth Paint Work?
White paint for teeth is unlikely to be effective for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it doesn’t penetrate tooth enamel, which means that the paint doesn’t reduce stains or whiten teeth. Secondly, cosmetic paint isn’t likely to adhere well to the hard and slippery surface of tooth enamel. Even if the user manages to follow all the instructions to a T, the effect probably won’t last long. Thirdly, if the paint doesn’t contain a whitening agent like hydrogen peroxide, the paint won’t penetrate the discolored enamel.
Paint-on teeth-whitening products that contain bleaching agents are more effective than tooth paint. Instant whitening for teeth would be wonderful if it were effective or reliable, but if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.