A Brighter Smile
Tooth discoloration is the number one concern for the average dental patient, and achieving aesthetically perfect teeth has become a popular goal. Unfortunately, your tooth enamel is naturally stained and worn with age, and even more so from regular exposure to sugar, tea, coffee, smoking and bacteria. This is where professional teeth whitening comes in.
Teeth whitening done in a professional dental office is a very safe and effective way to lighten your smile. It is probably the most affordable cosmetic dental procedure. Depending on the whitening option you choose, results can be seen very quickly: in office whitening, can whiten teeth anywhere from three to ten shades an hour.
Types Of Teeth Discoloration
There are two main ways in which your teeth can loose their whiteness.
Intrinsic Tooth Discoloration: The part of the tooth you see is made from two parts, the dentin and the enamel. The enamel is the white outer part of the tooth, and the dentin is the inner structure of the tooth. The dentin is yellow in color. When the enamel that covers it becomes thin, more of the yellow color shows through.
Extrinsic Tooth Discoloration: This is when the tooth enamel becomes stained. Coffee, red wine, and other acidic dark colored drinks if consumed over a long period of time will eventually turn the enamel a yellow color. Smoking is also another reason why the teeth can become yellow.
Dental Exam Before Whitening
As you age, both of these yellowing factors will continue to darken your teeth and so it is a somewhat natural process. However it is important that you have a dentist look at your teeth before you start any teeth whitening procedure to make sure that there are no other factors that might be involved.
At Artistic Smiles, we offer teeth whitening to Miami residents whose teeth are not as white as they once were for a virtually instant smile makeover. We understand that a beautiful smile is often the key to making a good first impression, which is why providing patients of all ages with aesthetically appealing teeth is one of the main goals of our dental practice.
Professionally supervised teeth whitening works more quickly and better protects sensitive gums, than over the counter whitening products. Getting an oral exam before you start any whitening procedure is important so that a dentist can make sure that your tooth discoloration is not the result of a more serious dental condition that would be in need of a separate treatment.
Your Teeth Whitening Options
- In-office whitening – The Philips Zoom! system whitens teeth by up to 6 to 10 shades within one hour. It also has the added benefit of stabilizing the tooth enamel, causes little to no post-treatment sensitivity and helps improve natural shine. The process involves applying a hydrogen peroxide gel onto the surface of your teeth, followed by applying a laser light to activate the gel for a quick yet flawless end result.
Your gums and tooth root surfaces are covered with a protective barrier to protect them from the hydrogen peroxide. A plastic retractor will hold your lips and cheeks away from your teeth as well. The gel will be left on for about an hour. When the gel is removed, the procedure is finished and the whitening will be completed .
- At-home whitening – Tray whitening is a more lengthy process which will take multiple applications over the course of a few weeks. The benefit however is that it allows you to maintain the desired whiteness of your smile as needed. If you will have a difficult time with the one hour in-office session, this method will be for you.
The process usually requires two appointments, the first appointment is when custom molds of your teeth are created which are used to create two clear, plastic trays that fit into the top and bottom of sets of teeth. You properly fill the trays with the hydrogen peroxide whitening gel to be placed into them and put the trays over your teeth. You will be instructed to wear the trays for about an hour every day, for a specific period of time depending on your individual needs.
Who Can Receive Teeth Whitening
Although teeth whitening is highly beneficial in the majority of cases, this treatment is not for everyone.
Because teeth whitening has become so popular, it is common for people to sometimes look for a DIY teeth whitening treatment instead of coming to the dentist to have the procedure done. But remember that whitening is unsafe for patients who are allergic to hydrogen peroxide (there are different grades of hydrogen peroxide, please do not try to whiten your teeth at home using store bought chemicals).
It will also not be effective for any discoloration caused by extreme plaque buildup or an oral disease. Furthermore, whitening systems only work on natural tooth enamel and will therefore be ineffective on existing fillings or crowns. It is crucial that you consult with your dentist Dr. Elejabarrieta prior to making the decision to whiten your teeth.
If you are ready to embark on the road to a bright and shining smile with teeth whitening, please contact the Miami dental experts from Artistic Smiles today.