So many of the simple indulgences we enjoy, such as coffee, tea, and red wine, can leave unsightly stains on our teeth. Often, these stains are not easily removed by regular brushing or even professional dental cleanings. If you are self-conscious about a less-than-vibrant smile, you may have considered having your teeth professionally whitened. Before scheduling your appointment with our team, here are some questions to consider:
Who is a good candidate for professional teeth whitening?
Professional whitening is appropriate for people whose teeth and gums are in good health. Because chemicals in bleaching treatments can lead to increased sensitivity, it’s important that your teeth are healthy to begin with. Other factors that may influence your candidacy include your age, existing restorations, and the type of discoloration on your teeth. Our cosmetic dentistry team can evaluate your oral health and advise if professional teeth whitening is right for you.
What types of stains will professional whitening remove?
Most yellowish stains like those caused by coffee and tea consumption respond well to professional whitening treatments. Brownish and greyish stains sometimes associated with antibiotic use or tooth trauma do not typically whiten with bleach, in which case cosmetic veneers might be recommended. Likewise, tooth-colored fillings, crowns, and caps will not respond to whitening treatments.
What’s the difference between at-home and in-office whitening?
Home use systems such as whitening strips, pens, and gels contain low-dose bleaching agents that can help improve the appearance of mild tooth staining. These treatments produce results slowly over a period of several weeks or even months and are designed to only treat surface stains. In-office professional whitening, on the other hand, is done under a dentist’s supervision using a relatively high concentration of bleaching gel. Your teeth can appear up to eight shades whiter with results that are immediately visible when your treatment concludes.
How long will the results last?
Professional teeth whitening results may last between six months to two years, and often much longer, depending on your lifestyle, diet, and oral hygiene habits.
If discoloration has dulled your smile and made you self-conscious about the appearance of your teeth, professional teeth whitening may offer you the brighter, dazzling results you desire. To learn more about professional teeth whitening, including costs and payment options, contact St Clair Shores Cosmetic Dentist and schedule a visit our cosmetic dental office today.