Tooth whitening (or bleaching) is a simple, non-invasive dental treatment used to change the color of natural tooth enamel and is an ideal way to enhance the beauty of your smile.
Because having whiter teeth has now become the number one aesthetic concern of most patients, there are a number of ways to whiten teeth. The most popular method is using a home tooth whitening system that will whiten teeth dramatically. Since tooth whitening only works on natural tooth enamel, it is important to evaluate replacement of any old fillings, crowns, etc. Replacement of any restorations will be done after bleaching so they will match the newly bleached teeth.
Tooth whitening is not permanent. A touch-up maybe needed every several years, and more often if you smoke, drink coffee, tea, or wine.
Reasons for tooth whitening:
Fluorosis (excessive fluoridation during tooth development).
Normal wear of outer tooth layer.
Stained teeth due to medications (tetracycline, etc.).
Yellow, brown stained teeth.
What does tooth whitening involve?
Our office offers 2 Methods:
Method 1: Tray System
This type of tooth whitening usually requires two visits. At the first appointment, impressions (molds) will be made of your teeth to fabricate custom, clear plastic, trays.
At your second appointment, you will try on the trays for proper fit, and adjustments will be made if necessary. The trays are worn with special whitening solution for 1-2 hours preferably after dinner each night for a couple of weeks depending on the degree of staining and desired level of whitening. It is normal to experience tooth sensitivity during the time you are whitening your teeth, but it will subside shortly after you have stopped bleaching.
Method 2: One Visit In Office System- As seen on TV!!!
This type of tooth whitening is an in office, one time procedure. A much higher concentration of whitening gel is applied to the tooth surfaces only, and is activated by a special light. This application process is done at three 15 minute increments, where your teeth will be brighter and whiter in less than 2 hours!!! You will leave our office with a set of custom made trays for you to use for about an hour after dinner each day for about one week to boost the process. It is a very simple and fast way to whiten especially if you have a upcoming function to go to and do not have the time to just do the tray system only.
If you decide either of the two methods of whitening, you will receive care instructions for your teeth and trays, and be encouraged to visit your dentist regularly to help maintain a beautiful, healthy, white smile.