Your smile influences other people’s perception of you and is a non-verbal cue that radiates warmth and makes others feel at ease around you. However, some people hardly show off their smiles due to imperfections such as tooth discoloration. Although daily oral hygiene practices like brushing and flossing help remove plaque, they do not whiten your teeth. Yellowing may develop as you age, or it can be caused by excessive fluoride, smoking, and antibiotics like doxycycline. Fortunately, teeth whitening by your cosmetic dentist in Orlando can help eliminate the extrinsic stains, giving you a brighter and more confident smile.
Available treatment options to whiten teeth
There are several whitening products that you can either get from your dentist or over-the-counter. They include whitening rinses, toothpaste, strips, and trays. Although at-home teeth whitening is less effective, it usually does not offer the desired results because of the low concentration of hydrogen peroxide. Additionally, you risk getting gum inflammation and sometimes infection when the whitening product gets in contact with the surrounding tissue. For this reason, dentists recommend professional whitening because it is fast, safe, and gives you the most dramatic results.
Who is a good candidate for teeth whitening?
If teeth whitening is top of your list, you want to ensure you are eligible for the procedure. Good candidates are those with healthy gums and little to no dental restorations. Patients with gum disease require treatment before they can get teeth whitening. Although the whitening process is generally safe with rare complications, certain circumstances can affect results or deem you unfit for teeth whitening. Teeth whitening may not be an ideal treatment for you if:
· You are pregnant or lactating. Pregnancy can complicate the process or make it impractical because of various reasons such as hormone fluctuation. High levels of estrogen and progesterone make teeth lose therefore not strong enough for the whitening process. The same hormonal changes put pregnant women at risk for gum disease and cavities.
- Your teeth are sensitive, or you are allergic to hydrogen peroxide, which is the active ingredient in whitening products.
- You have dental restorations and prosthetics such as veneers and crowns. Because these restorations do not respond to whitening, treatment could result in undesirable outcomes.
What to expect during a professional whitening
The following are the standard steps your specialist uses for in-office whitening.
- First, the dentist records the current shade of your teeth and then uses pumice to polish your teeth.
- The dentist fits retractors in your mouth to avoid contact between chemicals and your lips, tongue and places a barrier along your gum line to protect the gums.
- Next, the dentist coats your teeth’ front surface with a whitening solution that is left to sit for at least 30 minutes. A curing light or laser light is used to activate the chemical.
- Your dentist may repeat the process until the desired shade is achieved and fluoride is used afterward to soothe tooth sensitivity.
If your teeth are stained, consult with your dentist at Orlando Center For Cosmetic Dentistry to understand whether teeth whitening is right for you.