What You Need to Know About Dental Bleaching or Whitening

What You Need to Know About Dental Bleaching or Whitening

Dec 01, 2020

We all like to have a bright and dazzling smile. But, our teeth tend to discolor and tint because of our lifestyle and other factors like age. This is probably why many people are seeking cosmetic teeth whitening. Unfortunately, this has opened the door for many commercial teeth whitening products that have adverse effects.

That is why we recommend getting professional teeth whitening in Columbia. This guarantees that you will get the best whitening results.

What Causes Teeth Discoloration?

Before you visit Dr. Catlin Cox Reeves for a teeth whitening procedure, it is crucial to know the factors that cause your teeth to tint. Our teeth develop extrinsic and intrinsic (affecting the internal part of the teeth). Several factors influence this, such as:

  • Age. The dentin (gives the teeth color) changes as we age. Also, because the enamel erodes with time, the dentin becomes more exposed, causing the teeth to appear brown or yellow.
  • Lifestyle. Overindulging in taking wine, coffee, tea, and other foods that can stain your teeth will cause the enamel to change its shade. Smoking also affects the shade of your teeth.
  • Medication
  • Dental trauma can affect the nerves and tissues in your dentin to discolor.

Can I Get My Teeth Bleached?

Teeth bleaching can benefit anyone; however, you need to meet the eligibility criteria to have the teeth whitened:

  • You have worn out and thin enamel that may cause sensitivity. Consult our dentist on teeth whitening for sensitive teeth.
  • There’s excessive decay.
  • You have periodontal or gum infection.
  • You have dental restorations such as veneers and bridges. Dental restorations cannot be altered once they are fixed. That is why the dentist normally performs a teeth whitening procedure before the dental restorations are fixed. Once the restorations are discolored, you’ll need to have them replaced.

What Are The Available Teeth Whitening Treatments?

Teeth whitening is available in two options—professional and commercial products. While the commercial teeth whitening products are readily available, they are not the best option. Most toothpaste, mouth rinses, and gels contain too little or too much whitening agent. This will cause undesirable whitening results.

Furthermore, some may damage the enamel and cause it to darken.

Professional teeth whitening treatments are safer and offer the best whitening results. They contain a higher percentage of the whitening agent, but our dentist will apply a protective gel on the gums to shield from bruising.

You can also get at-home teeth whitening kits customized for you by our dental team. These take-home trays enhance the whitening results at home.

How is the Whitening Procedure Done?

The dentist will first do a professional cleaning to remove any plaque buildup. Next, he/she will apply the protective gel in the gums and the whitening solution on the teeth. The bleaching gel is left for 15 minutes and rinsed out. The procedure may be repeated two to three times based on the severity of the discoloration.

Does Teeth Whitening Affect the Enamel and Cause Teeth Whitening?

Teeth whitening can cause slight sensitivity, but it’s transient. This means it lasts for a short time, usually a few hours. However, the dentist may prescribe a tooth-sensitive toothpaste to relieve the discomfort.

How Long Does the Teeth Whitening Last?

Teeth whitening results can last for about a year, depending on your lifestyle and the foods you eat. You can consult the dentist on the frequency of getting the teeth whitening treatment.

Can I Use Home Whitening Products?

There are a few D.I.Y teeth whitening products that are said to help whiten the teeth. The effectiveness of these cosmetic whitening products is yet to be proved. Some, such as baking soda, may erode the enamel and cause it to weaken. It is, therefore, important to visit a dental clinic for the best teeth whitening treatment.

Take Away

Teeth whitening can help brighten your smile when done correctly. Therefore, visit Drs. Ellis, Green, and Jenkins for a professional teeth whitening procedure. Our dentist in Columbia, SC, will evaluate your teeth and recommend the appropriate teeth whitening procedure, whether in-office or at-home whitening kits.