How do You Whiten Teeth
Survey data compiled by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry indicates that about half of American adults find a person’s smile to be the most outstanding feature they remember following an introduction. The importance placed on a bright, healthy smile could help explain why many people seek ways to find teeth whitening fishers indiana. Whether due to braces being recently removed, in preparation for a big event, or to simply brighten the smile, this article will highlight some of the ways people can whiten their teeth.
Begin By Visiting Your Dentist
Anyone considering teeth whitening should start by first consulting their dentist. The dentist will help pinpoint the cause of the discoloration, recommend the best treatment options, and discuss any possible risks or side effects. Pre-existing conditions, like tooth decay or gum disease, will need to be addressed first to mitigate any gum irritation or tooth sensitivity while whitening. Addressing these issues also helps maximize the results as whitening is best performed on healthy teeth.
Dentists can also evaluate if the discoloration or staining is intrinsic or extrinsic. Removing intrinsic stains, those occurring on surfaces below the enamel, require bleaching to chemically whiten the tooth color. Extrinsic stains, which occur on the surface of the teeth, can frequently be removed mechanically.
Professional Teeth Whitening Options
People looking for the fastest, most effective, and most noticeable results will likely find a professional treatment the best option for whitening their teeth. Included amongst treatment options are:
- In-Office Whitening: Compared to store-bought options, in-office whitening systems use bleaching agents (peroxide gels) that are stronger and more effective. Prior to applying the whitening gel, the dentist will first apply a protective gel to the patient’s gums. Once the whitening gel has been applied, high-intensity light may be used to expedite the chemical reaction. Treatments often last about one hour and results can be achieved in a single visit.
- Bleaching Trays: Available in a range of peroxide concentrations, these trays are worn at-home to gradually whiten the patient’s teeth. The trays are custom fit to the patient’s mouth to minimize contact between the gums and bleaching agent. Depending on the severity of staining, bleaching kits can take a few days to a few weeks to reach desired results.
At-Home Teeth Whitening Options
Patients that are unable to visit their dentist or who prefer to whiten their teeth from the comfort of their home, may find over-the-counter whitening methods to be preferable. Often less expensive than professional options, these treatments utilize less concentrated bleaching agents. As such, more time can be required to see results.
- Whitening Strips: Thin plastic strips that are placed over the teeth and apply a hydrogen peroxide based bleaching agent. Typically inexpensive and convenient, whitening strips are worn 30-60 minutes daily for one to two weeks.
- Whitening Toothpaste: Useful for extrinsic tooth discoloration, these toothpastes have mild abrasives that scrub away surface staining. Although some brands contain baking soda or hydrogen peroxide, they mostly polish, rather than bleach, to affect the tooth’s color. As such, results can take longer to achieve.