A dazzling, whiter smile can be yours! If your teeth are discolored and you’d like a brighter smile, we can help! If you are considering cosmetic improvements such as crowns, porcelain veneers, or just replacing old discolored fillings, you may also wish to whiten your teeth first. Any restorations we make for you can be matched to your whitened teeth, to give great overall results.
How should I begin whitening my teeth?
The best way to begin any teeth whitening regimen is to schedule an appointment and talk to us about options. Before we provide any treatment, we require that you have a comprehensive or periodic exam by one of our dentists to ensure your teeth are healthy. For in-office teeth whitening, we offer Philips Zoom! Whitening treatments.
How does the in-office whitening process work?
The Zoom! Whitening process uses a carbon peroxide formula. For seven days prior to the in-office treatment, patients desensitize their gums at home using trays while they sleep. Right before we begin the treatment in our office, we protect our patients’ gums with an application of Liquidam, and then paint on the Zoom! Whitening formula.
What are the timeframes of the Zoom! Whitening process?
For Zoom! Whitening, the process may require between one and four 15-minute sessions in our office, depending on your desired shade of teeth whiteness.
How might I perform additional whitening or maintenance at home after an in-office whitening appointment?
You may opt to maintain your whitening with custom-fit take-home trays. With this option, you can expect to spend approximately one hour every three months to maintain the shade of teeth whitening you achieved in our office with Zoom.
If I prefer to only whiten my teeth at home, what are my choices?
Paint-on teeth whiteners and teeth whitening strips are good at-home options, along with teeth whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes for removing stains. We discuss each option below.
How do paint-on teeth whiteners work?
You can purchase paint-on teeth whiteners over the counter, and while they are normally less expensive than whitening strips or professional options, in many cases they are also less effective. With this option, users apply paint-on teeth whitening gel to their teeth with a small brush. As it hardens into a film, the whitening gel coats the treated teeth and dissolves in the mouth. Before you begin treating discolored teeth with this process, we recommend that you consult us.
What are teeth whitening strips and how do they work?
Teeth whitening strips are made of thin, flexible polyethylene (plastic). On one side of each strip is a thin film of hydrogen peroxide bleaching. Whitening strip kits normally include different-sized strips for the upper teeth and the lower teeth. You open the strips carefully, place them across your teeth, and gently press them into place so that the bleaching agent makes contact with as many of your teeth as possible. You can expect to wear the strips about 30 minutes at a time, twice a day. The full treatment process timeframe will vary.
How do teeth whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes work?
Whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes work to remove surface stains through the use of mild abrasives. However, these products do not lighten the actual shade of the teeth. Whitening toothpastes affect surface stains by cleaning only, and may mildly lighten your teeth. They are the least expensive options.
If you would like to learn more about teeth whitening, please contact us to schedule an appointment.