A whiter, more brilliant smile is one of the first things that others notice regarding your appearance. It’s no mystery that whiter tooth enamel makes us look better, more youthful, more pleasant, more self confident.
Smiles are not one-size-fits all so you do need to investigate all of your whitening options.
Who are the best candidates for teeth whitening?
Start by speaking with your dentist. He or she can tell you whether whitening procedures would be effective for you.
Teeth whitening is ideal for patients who have healthy, unrestored teeth (no fillings) and healthy gums. Patients with yellow tones to their teeth respond best, brownish-coiored teeth may bleach less well, and grayish-hued teeth may not bleach well at all.
Who are not good candidates?
• Children under the age of 16.
• Pregnant or lactating women.
• lndividuals with sensitive teeth and gums, receding gums and/or defective restorations.
• Anyone allergic to peroxide (the whitening agent) .
• lndividuals with gum disease or teeth with worn enamel.
• Cavities need to be treated before undergoing any whitening procedure.
• Tooth-colored fillings and resin composite materials used in crowns, veneers, bonding, bridges do not whiten. So any whitening procedure should be done prior to the placement of these dental restorations in order to match the degree of whitening to your new tooth color.
The Safest Teeth Whitening Method
In-office teeth whitening is the quickest and one of the safest methods to whiten your teeth. In-office teeth whiteners are a stronger solution than over the counter solutions. With expert care, you can achieve a dazzling white smile in less than an hour, safely and effectively.
Our preferred procedure is called chairside bleaching and usually requires only one office visit. We will apply either a protective gel to your gums or a rubber shield to protect the oral soft tissues. A bleaching agent is then applied to the teeth.
Referred to as “jump start”, this procedure provides an approximate one week jump start to the process. Custom fitted trays are then used at home to complete the procedure. We find this to be the most comfortable and effective for our patients.
Although some dentists utilize a special light or laser, followup with trays and at home bleaching is still necessary.
All toothpastes help remove surface stain through the action of mild abrasives.
“Whitening” toothpastes in the ADA Seal of Acceptance program have special chemical or polishing agents that provide additional stain removal effectiveness. Unlike bleaches, these ADA Accepted products do not change the color of teeth because they can only remove stains on the surface.
How White is White?
Patients need to understand that in-office whitening procedures will give a natural appearance to a person’s teeth with a slightly whiter color than the whites of your eyes.
– By Charles Braverman