What is teeth whitening?
Teeth whitening is a cosmetic procedure that is performed to eliminate dental stains and lighten the appearance of a patient’s teeth.
Teeth whitening options
There are many products you can get to whiten your teeth, from over-the-counter whitening strips to professional whitening treatments from your dentist.
In-office whitening produces the best results, but at-home whitening kits are also a good option if you’d rather whiten your teeth yourself.
In-office teeth whitening
Professional teeth whitening uses stronger whitening gels and customized mouthpieces to ensure the best whitening results. The procedure uses a highly potent solution of hydrogen peroxide, which your dentist will carefully apply to your teeth. Then, the dentist may use a laser light or heat source to activate the whitening gel and speed up the whitening process. They will also closely monitor the whitening process to ensure great results and minimal sensitivity. Professional teeth whitening can safely whiten your smile by up to 8 shades in about an hour. Professional teeth whitening is customized for your smile and ensures an even, natural-appearing result.
Professional take-home teeth whitening kit
Professional take-home teeth whitening kits are much stronger than over-the-counter options. They contain 10 to 35 percent carbamide peroxide, which breaks down stains on tooth enamel. Whitening kits also include trays and gel. Patients wear trays filled with gel for a few hours each day.
Professional teeth whitening kits are more effective than over-the-counter options, but your results will vary. It can take up to 10 days to see results. Keep in mind that teeth whitening only works on natural tooth enamel, so it won’t work on crowns, bridges, veneers, fillings, or dentures.
At-home teeth whitening products
Do-it-yourself teeth whitening products are available at your local drugstore. These kits use whitening gels to whiten your teeth. The gels are typically a carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide, both of which are effective in whitening teeth. In some cases, over-the-counter home whitening products can cause temporary tooth sensitivity and gum irritation.
Teeth whitening toothpaste
Whitening toothpaste is designed to remove surface stains from your teeth. However, whitening toothpaste does not remove stains that are below the surface of your teeth.
Professional teeth whitening aftercare
It’s important to avoid foods and drinks that can stain your teeth after your teeth have been bleached. This includes tea, coffee, wine, and berries. It’s important to avoid these beverages for a week or two after your procedure. You should also avoid smoking for at least two weeks after the teeth whitening procedure.
While your teeth may feel sensitive right after your procedure, you should still brush them regularly to maintain the results.
Request an appointment with Dr. An in San Francisco, CA, for your glowing smile, today!