Teeth whitening is all the rage for those wishing to have a smile that everyone in the room notices. Teeth whitening is a process that is most effective if started in your dentist’s office, so when trying to decide if teeth whitening is right for you, schedule a checkup with your Highlands Ranch dentistry. To learn more about teeth whitening before visiting the office, check out this article:
Everyone wants a mega-watt smile, but teeth whitening isn’t for everyone. Here’s what you need to know before you get gleaming.
You’ll need a checkup first
Before you can get that Hollywood smile, it’s critical to have a dental exam to ensure that your mouth is healthy. “Dental problems such as cavities and gum disease need to be addressed before bleaching,” says Eric Klein, DDS, a dentist in Norwalk, Connecticut. Here’s why it’s so important: “Dentists often see people with a mouth full of cavities who want a whiter mouth before they have a healthy mouth,” says William Graves, DDS, a dentist based in Southwest Nebraska. “But if you don’t address these issues you will have pain and sensitivity when you try to bleach.”
Slow and steady beats fast and furious
We’re all immediate gratification junkies, but bleaching your teeth several shades in one day with an in-office laser treatment may not be the most comfortable option. “Bleaching can cause sensitivity, and even sometimes pain in the teeth or mouth,” Dr. Graves says. Most dentists use a special fluoride desensitizing paste before performing whitening procedures to avoid increased sensitivity and discomfort, but some sensitivity following bleaching is considered normal. “That’s why sometimes slow and steady is better, however,” Dr. Graves adds, so you might want to skip the in-office treatment and go straight to the custom take-home trays.
You can try this at home
While in-office, light-activated procedures can jumpstart the whitening process, professional take-home kits sold in dental offices work very well to keep your pearly whites, well, pearly, compared to teeth-whitening products found in drug stores. According to Dr. Klein, custom whitening molds can be extremely effective in teeth whitening at home, especially when combined with a light-activated procedure.
It’s not one and done
In fact, you’ll probably need to use those custom trays at home if you don’t want to see your sparkle lose its luster. Teeth whitening requires commitment and maintenance. “You can’t bleach it and forget it,” Dr. Graves says. In fact, you can expect that shiny white color to fade within about six months unless you do monthly touch-ups at home with a professional-strength product. Just don’t use tooth-whitening products too often, though. Research shows that such products “wear away microscopic amounts of tooth enamel, which could increase tooth sensitivity, and even cause tooth decay.”