It’s hard to imagine anything more appealing than a sparkling, white smile. Yet our teeth rarely stay as white as we’d like them to without a little help. Fortunately, that help is available right here at the dental office.
Teeth whitening done in a professional dental setting is a safe, effective way to brighten your smile. It’s also perhaps the most economical cosmetic dental procedure. Depending on the whitening method you choose, results can be dramatic: in-office whitening, for example, can lighten teeth up to 10 shades in a single hour.
Professionally supervised whitening will work faster, and protect sensitive gums and tooth-root surfaces better, than over-the-counter whitening products. Having an oral exam before you begin any whitening process is an important first step, as we want to make sure your tooth discoloration is not the result of a dental condition in need of treatment. We also want you to be aware that it can be risky to have whitening solutions applied to your teeth by untrained personnel in shopping malls. If you have any questions about which whitening method would be best for you, we would be happy to answer them.
There are lots of things you can do to make sure your whitening results last as long as possible, and this will vary from person to person (six months to two years or even longer). First of all, please maintain your usual, conscientious routine of brushing and flossing every day, and keep up with your regular schedule of professional cleanings here at the dental office. Avoid foods and beverages that stain, including red wine, tea and coffee.
In-Office Whitening — This technique offers the fastest results with the most powerful whitening solutions available. First, we will cover your gums and tooth-root surfaces with a protective barrier to ensure your safety. A thin plastic device known as a retractor will hold your lips and cheeks away from your teeth as we apply a professional-strength hydrogen peroxide gel, which we will leave on for about an hour. When we remove the gel, the results will be obvious immediately.
Take-Home Whitening — This is another effective way to whiten your teeth, though you will play a greater role in ensuring the best possible results and several weeks may be needed to achieve your desired level of whiteness. First, we will take a mold of your teeth and then have two thin, flexible plastic mouth trays custom-made for you — one for the top teeth and one for the