Protect Your Teeth Against Over-Whitening

Michael Wirth
These days, cosmetic dentistry is all about the Great White Way. "We've had to create new porcelain colors to keep up with the bleaching trend," says New York dentist Dr. Gerald P. Curatola. Newfangled strips and trays are flooding shelves to meet the demand for what he calls "toilet-bowl white."

But the victim of a blinding-white smile could be your health. During the stain-removal process, peroxide releases carcinogenic free radicals, destroys healthy bacteria, and makes enamel more porous, says Curatola.

To stay safe, he suggests limiting bleaching to once every three months, thoroughly rinsing the mouth with water immediately after lightening, and using an enamel-strengthening toothpaste (like Sensodyne ProNamel) instead of whitening toothpaste. "You want Soft Scrub for the mouth, not Ajax," he says.

The craze in upkeep has women so hooked, doctors and industry pros are now turning them away!

Read about this in How Much Is Too Much?

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