Whitening your teeth to improve your smile is a popular cosmetic treatment, but you should understand that it does have some limitations to consider. If products are used correctly or if you seek the professional help from a qualified dentist, you can usually achieve a bright and appealing smile. Here are some things to think about when it comes to teeth whitening.
You should not expect over-the-counter methods to whiten your teeth more than a couple of shades. The whitening ingredients available in products at your drugstore are not as strong as those used at your dentist’s office. Consistent and correct use of over-the-counter options can help whiten your teeth, but it may not be as much as some patients hope will occur. On the other hand, professional methods can produce dramatic and quick improvements to the color of your teeth.
Certain habits contribute to stains on your teeth and if you don’t limit or stop activities prone to discoloring teeth, your newly whitened teeth may become discolored again. Foods like berries and curry, drinks such as coffee and red wine, and habits like smoking will all likely negatively affect your tooth color.
Bridges, crowns, and laminates might not respond in the same way to whitening agents as your natural teeth do. Ask your dentist about how your restorations might react to teeth whitening.
Tooth sensitivity is the most common side effect of whitening procedures, causing some patients to be unable to handle some methods of treatment. Gum sensitivity is another potential problem, but usually dissipates soon after the whitening procedure. Weakening of a restoration may also occur during whitening treatment, sometimes making it necessary to replace them.
Teeth whitening must be occasionally repeated if you want your bright smile to remain for a lifetime. The effects do not last indefinitely, because aging and activities can stain your teeth. Excessive bleaching may damage your teeth though, so be sure to discuss your whitening treatment with your dentist.
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It’s a fact of life that teeth can become dingy and yellowed through the years. Your diet, age, personal habits and more affect the shade of your teeth. Even with the best care, it’s nearly inevitable that at some point you’ll want to brighten your smile. Once you pursue teeth whitening, you’ll want to be sure to make your new smile last as long as possible.
Over-the-counter products are readily available from your local drugstore and simple to use. However, they can take a long time to obtain full results and even then, you may not achieve the desired shade you’d like. Professional teeth whitening is the fastest and most dramatic way to brighten your smile.
If you spend the time and money to whiten your teeth professionally, making it last will be important to you. Results can last for a long time, but probably not forever. Here are some tips for making your white teeth last longer:
- Watch your diet especially carefully for the first 48 hours following treatment. Your teeth are at the most risk for staining during this timeframe.
- For the first few days, avoid eating known staining foods like blueberries, beets, dark soups, marinades, sauces, curry or tomato products.
- At first, avoid broccoli, green beans, peas, sprouts, corn, or skinned potatoes. These have increased risk of particles getting stuck into the highly susceptible tooth pores after whitening treatment.
- Watch out for citrus fruits that are high in acidity, which can also make your saliva more acidic. Your teeth are more prone to damage from acid when they already have increased sensitivity from the whitening chemicals.
- Avoid drinking dark colas or coffee, since both can stain your teeth no matter when you drink them.
- Get in the habit of drinking from a straw so that dark colored drinks don’t come into as much contact with your teeth.
Choosing the right foods and drinks after teeth whitening can make a big difference in the length of time your teeth stay white. Make the best decisions to enjoy your bright smile.
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Are you tired of your dark, dingy smile? Have you decided it’s time to brighten up your pearly whites? Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic dental treatments to quickly and effectively improve the quality of your smile. However, there are many whitening options offered, and you may be confused about which type of whitening treatment will best help you achieve the look you desire. Whether you are deciding between at-home whitening treatments or professional teeth whitening, there are some things to consider when exploring your options:
- How quickly would you like to see results? If you are planning for a special event such as a wedding or trip, professional teeth whitening will offer quicker results than at-home treatment. With professional whitening, your dentist may be able to whiten your teeth up to ten shades in as little as one visit.
- Are your teeth highly sensitive? With professional whitening treatment, your dentist can take extra precautions to avoid over-exposing your teeth and gums to bleaching gels, which may be harder to do with at-home treatments.
- Are you committed to your whitening treatment? If you are diligent and follow instructions, at-home treatment can be highly effective. However, if you neglect to wear the trays as directed or to follow whitening treatment instructions, you results will be diminished. If you are stretched for time, or forgetful, professional whitening treatment may be the best option to achieve optimal results.
- How severely are your teeth stained? Teeth with heavy discoloration may benefit the most and show the greatest improvement with more intense professional in-office treatments.
Talk to your dentist about whitening treatment options to find out more about what procedures would best suit your needs. Regardless of which type of whitening treatment you select, with diligent treatment and proper care, you are sure to enjoy the benefits of a whiter and healthier looking smile.
If you live in the Ottawa area and you’re looking for a new dentist, contact us today.