Do you have the goal of achieving a whiter and brighter smile? Today, our Brandon dentists talk about different teeth whitening methods and their effects to help you pick the best possible option for you.
What is teeth whitening?
The purpose of the cosmetic teeth whitening dental procedure is to make the colour of your teeth lighter by using bleaching agents that are peroxide-based. As the active ingredient breaks down, oxygen acts on the tooth enamel, providing a whitening effect.
What are my options for teeth whitening?
Today there is a range of teeth whitening methods available, which could make it hard to pick the right one. Each option has its own sets of advantages and disadvantages, while still offering positive outcomes.
In-Office Teeth Whitening
The most effective teeth whitening procedures are performed by your dentist in a dental office. This is because the whitening agents in your dentist’s gel are much stronger and produce much more effective results than over-the-counter products.
The in-office procedure typically takes about an hour. Your dentist will use a concentrated whitening solution to remove surface stains from your teeth and lighten their natural colour. This yields somewhat more efficient results than at-home whitening solutions, which could take days or weeks to show results.
At-Home Professional Teeth Whitening Trays
This is a take-home whitening method that your dentist supervises. You will need to attend an initial dental appointment where your dentist will take an impression of your teeth in order to make your whitening trays.
You’ll take the whitening trays home and manage the teeth whitening application yourself. You’ll wear the whitening gel for between 30 minutes to a few hours a day, for 1 to 3 weeks depending on what your dentist prescribes.
This is a whitening option that gradually removes surface stains to lighten the natural colour of your teeth.
Whitening toothpaste works to remove surface stains and slightly whiten your teeth. However, keep in mind that whitening toothpaste will not affect the natural colour of your teeth, and they will be unable to lighten stains that have penetrated below the tooth’s surface.
Enamel strengthening toothpaste can help to defend your teeth from cavities and protect your enamel from further damage, which can prevent stains from developing in the first place.
These are small strips of plastic that have a peroxide-based gel coating. When you place the strips on your teeth, the peroxide coating removes surface stains, making the colour of your teeth lighter.
Typically you would need to apply the whitening strips to your teeth every day for approximately 2- to 3-weeks, and wear them for no more than 30 minutes each time. Since there is only a small amount of peroxide contained in these products, you will probably only see subtle results.
Porcelain veneers are razor-thin strips of porcelain that are affixed to the fronts of your teeth to improve their colour, shape and symmetry.
If only one or a few of your teeth are discoloured, porcelain veneers may be a practical solution to even out the colour of your teeth.
Picking the Best Whitening Option for You
The best teeth whitening products for you will depend on a number of factors, from personal preference to the time you have available in your schedule, and your budget. You may want to consider looking up teeth whitening reviews online for tips and ideas from other people who have opted to take the professional and/or at-home route.