What is that famous quote by Martin Charnin, “You’re never fully dressed without a smile”? Well, an awesome way to complete any look is a bright smile without having to feel self-conscious about your teeth. It’s no wonder teeth whitening has become increasingly popular. However, before whitening your teeth, there are a few things you need to understand, and we’ve discussed them below.
What are the causes of teeth discolouration?
There are three main categories of reasons why your teeth might change colour, namely; extrinsic (food, drinks like coffee, tea, or wine and tobacco use), intrinsic (genetics, excess fluoride, decay, injury, and medications like antihistamines), and age-related causes.
What exactly is teeth whitening?
This is an operative method of bleaching or lightening the natural teeth colour without any removal of the teeth surface. Simply put, it lightens the shade of your teeth without changing the colour completely.
How does teeth whitening work?
Before going for teeth whitening, ensure that you practice good dental hygiene, as whitening is more effective when your teeth are healthy. You will also need to visit your dentist to discuss if teeth whitening is even recommended for you. Teeth whitening can be categorised as either intrinsic whitening or extrinsic whitening. Intrinsic whitening involves the absorption of a whitening gel (hydrogen peroxide gel) by the inner part of the teeth (dentin) to become lighter.
The lightened dentin then reflects a brighter colour through the enamel and makes the teeth appear whiter. As for extrinsic whitening, stains are simply removed from the outer part of the teeth by using either whitening toothpaste or tooth polishing by a dentist. One other method is laser-whitening, where the dentist paints a bleaching product onto the teeth and then shines a laser on it to activate the whitening process. This procedure usually lasts between 45 minutes to 1 hour.
Where can you go to get your teeth whitened?
There are several options you can take to get your teeth whitened, some of which are;
- Over-the-counter products: This is achieved using products like whitening toothpastes and strips. Although these products are okay, they might not be as effective since their concentration of bleaching products is relatively low.
- In-chair teeth whitening: This is one of the quickest and most effective ways to get your teeth whitened. It typically involves 1 or 2 visits to the dentist. Professionals like Sherwood Park Dental Practice will provide an amazing and stress-free teeth whitening service with great testimonies from clients.
- At home kits with the aid of your dentist: In this case, your dentist makes a customised kit for you to use at home. This process may take longer since your teeth whiten at a slower pace.
The safest way to get your teeth whitened
According to the NHS, you should always opt for getting your teeth whitening done by a registered dental professional. Always consult with your dentist before using a home teeth whitening kit.
Risks associated with teeth whitening
Some people may experience side effects like tooth sensitivity, sore throat, slight burns to the gum, and white patches on the teeth. These are, however, temporary but if they persist, talk to your dentist.
How often should you get your teeth whitened?
Professional teeth-whitening lasts up to 6 months before wearing off. It is safe to go for another procedure after that, provided your teeth remain healthy.
The takeaway here is that teeth whitening is a completely safe procedure you can use for gaining your confident smile back. Just remember to consult with your dentist to discuss your options before using any whitening products.