Your smile is quite often the very first thing that people notice about you. It has the power to make or break the first impressions that you leave. When you smile, your teeth become a very prominent feature. If your teeth are discolored, your smile becomes dull, and your confidence can plummet. At Platte Valley Dental Care, we can restore the bright white color of your teeth, and the appearance of your smile, with teeth whitening.
What Is Teeth Whitening?The enamel of your teeth is naturally bright white. However, over time it can pick up stains. Common contributors to stains include heavily pigmented foods and beverages like coffee, red wine, curries, chocolate, tobacco products, certain medications, and even simply your age. When stains occur, the quality of your smile is dulled. Teeth whitening is a procedure that is specifically designed to eliminate the stains from your teeth, restoring their naturally bright beauty as well as your confidence.
What About Over-the-Counter Products?You most likely have seen the numerous whitening products available in the oral care section of the supermarket. These products range from toothpaste and mouthwashes to strips, gels, and pens. While they promise incredible results at a low price, these products only contain low levels of bleaching agents. As a result, it can take a long time and several treatments to make just a minor change in the color of your teeth. They may be effective for minor discoloration, but if you have more significant stains, these products will not be able to help you achieve the results you are looking for.
Teeth Whitening OptionsThere are two ways in which your teeth can be professionally whitened, either in the office or your own home. In-office whitening, also called chairside whitening, involves a single treatment and only requires an hour of your time. We begin by cleaning your teeth. After the teeth are cleaned, a lip retractor is placed in your mouth, and a protective gel is applied to your gums. Next, the whitening gel is applied to the surfaces of your teeth, and specialized light is shone over them. The active ingredient in the gel begins to break down, forming oxygen bubbles that enter the enamel and dentin of your teeth, clinging to stains and bleaching them away.
In the office, whitening can whiten your teeth several shades, and the results are noticeable right away. Your other option for whitening is take home trays. We custom create trays for you based on impressions of your mouth and provide you with the trays as well as the whitening gel. The trays work to hold the gel against your teeth. They are meant to be worn for several hours twice a day, or overnight while you sleep. Depending upon your goals, your treatment may last one to two weeks. Your teeth can be whitened several shades, and results typically begin to show in just under a week.
How Long Does Teeth Whitening Last?Teeth whitening can help you achieve amazing results. These results, however, are not permanent. The same factors that caused the discoloration in the first place can cause it again. Taking action to prevent stains can help your results to last. Avoiding foods and drinks that stain, or at least limiting them, can help significantly. You should drink plenty of water. Quit smoking or using other tobacco products. It can also be beneficial to have your teeth periodically touched up to help keep them bright and beautiful. If your smile has been dulled by discolored teeth, whitening can restore your smile and your confidence. For more information, and to schedule your consultation, call Platte Valley Dental Care today at (816) 219-3133.