Author(s): Li Y, Greenwall L
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Abstract In-office tooth whitening using hydrogen peroxide (H₂O₂) has been practised in dentistry without significant safety concerns for more than a century. While few disputes exist regarding the efficacy of peroxide-based at-home whitening since its first introduction in 1989, its safety has been the cause of controversy and concern. This article reviews and discusses safety issues of tooth whitening using peroxide-based materials, including biological properties and toxicology of H₂O₂, use of chlorine dioxide, safety studies on tooth whitening, and clinical considerations of its use. Data accumulated during the last two decades demonstrate that, when used properly, peroxide-based tooth whitening is safe and effective. The most commonly seen side effects are tooth sensitivity and gingival irritation, which are usually mild to moderate and transient. So far there is no evidence of significant health risks associated with tooth whitening; however, potential adverse effects can occur with inappropriate application, abuse, or the use of inappropriate whitening products. With the knowledge on peroxide-based whitening materials and the recognition of potential adverse effects associated with the procedure, dental professionals are able to formulate an effective and safe tooth whitening regimen for individual patients to achieve maximal benefits while minimising potential risks.
This article was published in Br Dent J
and referenced in Journal of Antivirals & Antiretrovirals