Teeth Whitening is getting ever more popular. We are explaining the “at home teeth whitening option” in this article. If you are interested in Teeth Whitening but would prefer the “at the dental office option” please give us a call and schedule a free consultation. We will explain in detail how the “in office” option works and if home or in office tooth whitening is best for you.
If you’ve ever looked in the mirror and wished your teeth were whiter and brighter you are not alone many people every day make the decision to get a brighter and whiter smile.
Professional tooth whitening is one of the most effective ways to improve your smile and has the advantage of being simple, predictable and cost effective.
It is important to start with the small print. Tooth-whitening is safe when carried out by a dentist or under direct supervision of a dentist. Using the wrong product can cause irreversible harm to your teeth including discoloration and erosion so always consult a dentist if you are considering tooth whitening.
Firstly let’s consider- why do teeth discolor and how can we whiten them?
Although teeth seem solid, they are, in fact, permeable. This means that colors from food, drink and medicines can actually penetrate enamel and remain there long after that cup of tea or glass of wine is gone.
Fortunately that same permeability means that dental whitening gels can penetrate teeth and virtually bleach out these stains.
So how do we carry out professional tooth whitening?
Teeth are whitened by being covered in whitening gel for a period of hours – generally overnight. This is achieved by making you a “tray” that fits your mouth perfectly and holds the whitening gel against your teeth exactly where we want it to be.
At Malo Smile USA our whitening trays are carefully constructed at our professional in house dental laboratory by a qualified dental technician; this ensures a well fitting tray.
We take time to check that the tray fits your mouth perfectly.
We then demonstrate how to put exactly the right amount of gel into the tray and show you how to place the soft tray into your mouth at bedtime.
We can determine how many nights you will use your tooth-whitening for and if you require any special instructions.
Tooth whitening will permanently change the color of your teeth however if your diet contains food or drink that stain your teeth, you might feel that you want to give your teeth a whitening boost after six months or so. Hence it’s important you are given detailed instructions on caring for your whitening tray. We will discuss the best way of doing this so your tray maintains its exact fit and hence can be re-used at regular intervals as discussed with your dentist.
Porcelain restorations e.g. crowns, bridges and veneers are not permeable so don’t discolor and stain in the same way that teeth do. If you have these restorations it’s important to discuss tooth whitening with your dentist prior to proceeding with any treatment.
The science behind tooth-whitening products:
There is only one product that can safely be used to whiten teeth – hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide in the correct concentration and formula is safe and extremely effective. One drawback of hydrogen peroxide is that it rapidly breaks down into inactive by-products; within an hour it has broken down and is completely ineffective. Hence dental companies produce whitening gels containing a simple chemical called carbamide peroxide. Once placed in the mouth this gradually breaks down into hydrogen peroxide. Carbamide peroxide is effective because it provides active hydrogen peroxide for 6-8 hours.
Are there any side effects in professional tooth whitening?
The only side-effect some patients report is a temporary sensitivity. Whitening gel manufacturers are constantly trying to improve their products by adding desensitisers. If you do suffer from or develop sensitivity we can advise you on the best way to manage it using the very effective desensitisers now available. It’s important to understand that this teeth sensitivity is temporary.
If you are considering tooth-whitening, Malo Smile USA can offer you:
- Professionally made whitening trays
- The best whitening products available
- Detailed instruction and demonstration on using your whitening system
- Advice on caring for your whitening trays
- Discuss any future needs you may have for top-up whitening
- Advise you on an integrated treatment plan if you already have fixed porcelain restorations on any of your teeth or if you are planning such restorations.
- Help you manage sensitivity if it occurs