When you look in the mirror what color are your teeth white, yellow, or Brown? You may or may not be aware that overtime teeth naturally become darker and stained. In addition, to natural aging, there are some other factors like cigarette smoking, certain types of foods, and drinks such as coffee and tea that also darken your teeth. Some prescription and over-the-counter drugs can also have the same effect as well, a bright white smile can be achieved by bleaching your teeth, there are several ways in which this can be done but the most commonly recommended technique by dentists is an in-office bleaching.
Hands down, this is the quickest and most effective way to whiten your teeth, here’s how it works in-office whitening uses a concentrated hydrogen peroxide gel to bleach your teeth to A brighter whiter smile. To help accelerate the process for better results a special light or with some bleaching systems our laser is used in conjunction with the gel, what’s great is that the whitening procedure generally takes only one office visit.
The first step is to make sure the teeth are free of any plaque or tartar.
The next step is to apply a protective layer of cream to your lips, so they stay moist during the process.
Next, your dentist will place a protection on your gums, now that the lips and gums have been protected your dentist will apply the bleaching gel to your teeth.
Finally, the entire process is accelerated by shining a special light on your teeth, the entire process takes roughly 1 to 2 hours, and unlike other whitening techniques that may take weeks to show results, you will see results almost instantly. In-office whitening can last anywhere from a few months to a few years and the degree of whitening changes from one person to another. This in part depends on the original condition of your teeth, specifically how stained they were, as well as the strength of the bleaching gel used.
In large part, it depends on your eating, drinking, and smoking habits as no teeth whitening solution will result in a permanent color change of your teeth, and it won’t prevent future staining. However, you can maintain this whitening effect with the use of a home whitening kit, home whitening involves wearing a custom-fit mouthguard, that contains a less concentrated hydrogen peroxide gel to help preserve your new brighter and whiter smile.
There are some minor risks associated with whitening, the most common side effect is tooth sensitivity, tooth sensitivity is generally mild and often subsides in a few days. Brushing your teeth with a highly concentrated fluoride toothpaste or desensitizing toothpaste such as Sensodyne will also help reduce the discomfort. Dr. Lieu can also prescribe you a fluoride gel to use, which will also help reduce the sensitivity, gum irritation, or discoloration, side effects such as these will subside and the gum will go back to normal condition in about a few days.
If you have any additional questions please consult with Dr. Lieu.