Stained or discolored teeth are becoming wide-spread among adults of all ages, and arise from a variety of sources, including:
- Foods/drinks. Wines, coffee, tea, and certain fruits and vegetables can stain your teeth.
- Tobacco use.
- Poor dental hygiene. Improper brushing and flossing to get rid of plaque and stain-producing substances like coffee and tobacco can cause teeth staining.
- Aging. Once you become old, the outside surface of the enamel on your teeth gets worn away, exposing the natural yellow color of dentin.
There are a number of products and techniques designed for anyone who wants to achieve a brighter smile, and with so many choices available, it will be challenging to pick out the method that is best for you.
The easiest way to get started in any teeth-whitening program is to arrange an appointment with your doctor and discuss the differences between in-office professional whitening and at-home whitening.
In-Office Teeth Whitening
In-office whitening is the first professional option. This procedure is carried out in a dental clinic. At the time of treatment, your doctor will apply a whitening gel to the surface of your teeth. The entire treatment will take approximately 90 minutes and you should be able to observe the results immediately.
At-Home Teeth Whitening (Tray Whitening)
Tray bleaching is a form of professional whitening that utilizes custom-made trays and whitening gel that can only be obtained from your dentist. The whitening gel is placed in custom-fitted trays that match completely with your teeth. Contrary to strips, this procedure whitens all your natural teeth and consists of ingredients designed to provide maximum comfort.
At-home professional tray whitening normally takes 10 to 14 days, but you may observe results in as little as three to five days.
At-Home Teeth Whitening (Paint-On Teeth Whiteners)
There are several over-the-counter teeth whitening alternatives and one kind of easy to find the whitening product is generally known as a “paint-on” teeth whitener. Paint-on whiteners can be bought over-the-counter and are normally cheaper and less effective than whitening strips or professional options.
Paint-on teeth whiteners contain a gel that is applied to the tooth using a small brush.
Paint-on whitening gel hardens into a film that encases the teeth and dissolves in the mouth.
As with any teeth whitening procedure, it is good to seek advice from a dental professional before use.
At-Home Teeth Whitening (Teeth-Whitening Strips)
Teeth-whitening strips are thin, elastic plastic strips with a thin film of hydrogen peroxide on one side. Whitening strip sets contain two types of strips: strips for the upper teeth and strips for the lower teeth.
The whitening agent is used by positioning the strips across your teeth and lightly pressing the strips to ensure contact with all your teeth.
Teeth-whitening strips are normally worn for 30 minutes, twice a day. The duration of treatment will vary.
At-Home Teeth Whitening (Whitening Toothpaste and Mouthwash)
The most affordable teeth-whitening products are whitening toothpaste and mouthwashes. Created to have “whitening” capabilities, toothpaste and mouthwashes work to get rid of surface stains utilizing mild abrasives.
However, in contrast to the materials used in professional whitening procedures, these products will not lighten the actual color shade of the tooth. Whitening toothpaste affects surface stains and will slightly lighten your teeth.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment and learn more about your teeth-whitening options.