NOVON® is a new, patented whitening compound that comprises hydrogen peroxide, urea and sodium tripolyphosphate (Figure 1) and is the active ingredient in a new generation of tooth whitening gels.
NOVON®, when formulated, has a pH value of 6.5, i.e. in the acidic range. However, when NOVON® is diluted, the pH value rises to 8.5, i.e. into the alkaline range. This is sometimes referred to as a “pH jump”.
NOVON® is used in the next generation of tooth whitening gels.
Gels containing NOVON® have a pH value of 6.5, i.e. acidic and stable. However, during their use, the gels are diluted in the mouth and the “pH jump” created by NOVON® results in an alkaline environment. In this alkaline environment hydrogen peroxide breaks down to produce a larger amount of perhydroxyl ions (Figure 2). The result of the enhanced release of perhydroxyl ions is a more effective whitening action. Perhydroxyl ions are responsible for the whitening action as they break down the large organic molecules that cause staining of the teeth (Figure 3).
Regular tooth whitening gels use hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide (a mixture of urea and hydrogen peroxide) as their whitening agent. To ensure these gels are stable, and have a good shelf-life, they are produced at a pH value of less than 7.0. However, in order for hydrogen peroxide to break-down and release perhydroxyl ions, in other words, to whiten effectively, an alkaline environment is required! Whitening gels containing NOVON® are the only ones which, during use, produce a “pH jump”. This jump causes a change in pH from acid to alkaline and this results in an enhanced release of perhydroxyl ions for a faster whitening effect.
NOVON®-containing gels can therefore produce a similar whitening effect within a shorter time-frame, in comparison to whitening using a regular gel. Alternatively, within the same time-frame, a similar level of whitening can be achieved with a lower inclusion level of NOVON®. This should be an advantage to patients with sensitive teeth. The lower inclusion level effect has been reported in results of clinical trials at the Eastman Dental Institute, University College, London (Hyland et al., 2014).
Diagram to explain the whitening action of perhydroxyl ions. (Click to enlarge)