Your smile may gradually lose its sparkle regardless of how thorough your oral hygiene routine is. Although brushing and flossing your teeth every day and scheduling professional teeth cleaning visits can help to prevent stains, factors such as aging, smoking, and consuming wine, tea, coffee, and other colored foods and drinks can contribute to the yellowing or discoloration of your teeth.
Tooth whitening provides you with a way to improve the color of your teeth and ultimately enhance your smile. This requires you to consult a dentist to design a personalized treatment plan that is based on the current shade of your teeth and the desired outcome. Professional teeth whitening in the dentist’s office is the most common bleaching method, and is usually accomplished using hydrogen peroxide or another bleaching agent.
The treatment is performed by a team member during the first appointment, and then under one’s supervision for subsequent treatments to ensure safety and effectiveness of the treatment.
The procedure involves:
- Placing a rubber shield or some gel to protect your gums
- Applying the bleaching agent on your teeth using some trays that fit snugly like a mouthguard
- Leaving the trays on to activate the bleaching ingredient and break it down into oxygen that penetrates tooth enamel to change the shade of your teeth
- A laser may be used to speed up the breakdown for faster results. This requires application of a higher concentration of the bleaching agent without using the trays, and then using laser technology to activate it. This improves the color of your teeth by 5-6 shades.
After your whitening treatment, the effects can last for a long period of time if you practice proper oral hygiene. Please visit your dentist to learn more about teeth whitening options that may work for you.