Bright, white teeth are one of the most desirable attributes of the 21st century, yet unfortunately, many of us are not blessed with a naturally white smile. In fact, it may surprise you to learn that the natural color of teeth is primarily determined by the color of the dentin – which is the middle layer of the tooth. This is because the outermost part of the teeth, the enamel, is largely translucent
Factors that can influence the color of teeth
A variety of different things can influence the color of our teeth and can leave us feeling unhappy with the appearance of our smile. These include:
- Smoking, where nicotine stains the teeth
- Age, since dentin darkens with age
- Consuming colored foods and drinks which can stain the teeth
- Sustaining trauma to the teeth
- Improper brushing of the teeth
- Excessive exposure to fluoride during the formation of the teeth
- Excessive exposure to antibiotics during the formation of the teeth
- Amalgam fillings
Tooth discoloration is a fact of life, but it doesn’t mean that you have to live with less than white, bright teeth. Teeth whitening is the most popular elective dental treatment in the world and can transform your entire smile.
What is teeth whitening?
Teeth whitening is the process during white the teeth are artificially lightened using specific chemicals or substances. There are many different products available both online and over the counter that contain some degree of whitening substance. Countless people have been known to use these products in an attempt to remove staining and discoloration in order to lighten their teeth. Unfortunately, most users have found that the results produced by these products are unexceptional and do not last particularly long. In many cases, continued product use is necessary to sustain any improvement that has been made. Professional tooth whitening is long-lasting and needs to be applied less frequently and is, therefore, a superior alternative to over the counter and online products.
How does professional teeth whitening differ to at-home products?
Professional teeth whitening is carried out in the comfort of your cosmetic dentist’s office and fulfilled by a trained and experienced professionals. This ensures that patients can experience a range of important and valuable benefits including:
- Whitening that uses the strongest grade of whitening agent currently available which is only made available to licensed dentists for professional application.
- Greater precision with which the whitening agent is applied. This can reduce irritation and soreness which is common if the whitening agent gets onto the soft tissues of the mouth.
- More consistent results since the whitening agent can be placed with greater precision and accuracy.
- Fewer whitening sessions needed due to the strength of the whitening agent.
- The possibility to whiten your teeth from the inside out. This is a more invasive process that involves the whitening agent being placed inside the tooth itself in order to bleach the dentin. Since this is a more invasive process, an anesthetic will need to be used.
- Longer-lasting results.
Maintaining your teeth whitening results
Exactly how many sessions of whitening you will need will depend on how quickly you respond to the treatment. Once you have had enough sessions to reach your desired shade of whiteness, you will be given specific instructions to help you maintain the color of your new smile for longer. This will include things like:
- Avoiding foods and drinks that contain tannins, such as carrots, red peppers, red wine, and coffee.
- Taking extra-special care to clean your teeth multiple times each day, particularly around the area where the teeth meet the gums.
- Give up smoking as nicotine is one of the leading causes of tallow teeth.
- Visiting your dentist for regular checkups.
If you are considering teeth whitening and would like to schedule an appointment to discuss this popular cosmetic service, please get in touch with our dental office in Shavertown, PA today.