Have you been waiting for the right time to look into a teeth whitening treatment? There’s no better time than the New Year! While you are setting goals for 2019, one to include could be achieving a whiter and brighter smile. Teeth whitening lightens the color of your teeth, helping remove discoloration and stains that have gradually appeared over time.
The primary target of a teeth whitening treatment is the tooth enamel, which shows the natural enamel color combined with the color of the dentin underneath. The reflecting light off the dentin determines the overall color of your smile. Other defining factors are the smoothness and thickness of the enamel, which usually results from inherited genes as well as the overall wear of the enamel over time. Some reasons your smile might not be not so bright may include:
- Poor dental care (not brushing and flossing every single day or not attending your biannual dental visits)
- Natural aging (wear and tear; dentin starts to yellow over time)
- Smoking or tobacco stains
- Dark-colored liquids (coffee, tea, soda, wine)
- Dental trauma (if the dentin is damaged, it can create a darker layer underneath the enamel)
- Medications (certain medications or medical care can cause discoloration or dental damage)
If these sound like reasons you have yellowing teeth, then we can help find the solution to give you a whiter smile. The teeth whitening process is simple; whitening products contain a safe tooth bleach that breaks up stains and targets your tooth enamel.
Common whitening options include:
- Stain Removal Toothpaste: These over-the-counter products usually contain mild abrasives and polishing agents, which remove stains on the enamel surface.
- Whitening strips: This at-home treatment consists of flexible strips coated with a peroxide gel. The strips are placed over the teeth so the gel comes in contact with the tooth enamel, which whitens the teeth. Most strips are completely safe to use, but those with chlorine dioxide can erode the tooth enamel. Our office has safe whitening strips available if that is the method best for you.
- Custom Bleaching Trays: Our team can provide you with trays formed to exactly fit your upper and/or lower arches for at-home teeth whitening with instructions on how to whiten, for how long and how much solution to place in the trays.
Before you go ahead with teeth whitening, there are a few factors to consider and discuss with our team:
- Whether or not you have sensitive teeth
- White spots
- Tooth decay
- Infected gums
- Dental work (dental bridges, crowns, veneers, etc.)
- Previous tooth injuries
- Current medications
We invite you to speak to our team about whether you’re a good candidate for teeth whitening. We will work with you to figure out your best options. Of course, one of the best and simplest ways to keep your smile white and bright is to maintain excellent dental care. This includes brushing at least twice a day, flossing once a day and seeing your dentist regularly. Also, it would be best to consume healthy foods and drinks that are as non-staining as possible.
To find which teeth whitening option is best for you or to schedule your next dental appointment, please give us a call. We will be happy to help you achieve your best smile today!