Your smile is often the first thing people notice about you. A happy, confident smile can light up your whole face and make a good impression. Unfortunately, food, drink, or just plain aging can make your teeth dingy or yellow. This can affect your self-confidence enough to make you want to hide your grin. Before you do that, learn more about options to revitalize and brighten the look of your teeth.
Types of teeth whitening
Teeth whitening falls into one of two categories: bleaching and whitening products.
Bleaching changes the color of your tooth enamel by removing stains from the surface and deeper areas of your teeth. The active chemical ingredient used to bleach teeth is typically hydrogen peroxide. You can find bleaching kits or whitening toothpaste with hydrogen peroxide at your local pharmacy, but products you can buy over the counter usually contain a lower concentration of active ingredient than those prescribed by your dentist.
When you have your teeth bleached professionally, you can undergo the procedure in-office or be fitted with custom trays to use at home. Most patients don’t experience harmful side effects, but bleaching can cause minor pain and discomfort. OTC bleaching products can cause more tooth pain, sensitivity, and gum irritation, especially if you are not using custom-fitted whitening trays approved by your dentist, so be wary of using them without proper instruction.
2. Whitening products
How it works: There are hundreds of these on the market, including toothpastes, mouthwashes, tongue strips, etc. Some options, like whitening toothpastes, use a rough material that scrapes off surface stains to polish the teeth. The “scraping” material found in most whitening toothpastes, however, can actually be damaging to your teeth if used too often or for too long. However, most of these products do not actually have a dramatic effect on yellowed teeth, or only work if used multiple times per day for several weeks or months.
Will teeth whitening work for me?
The success of your teeth whitening depends on several factors. The level of staining in your teeth is the biggest one. Patients with yellowish “extrinsic” staining from food, drink, or lack of proper oral hygiene will probably see the best results, while patients whose teeth have gone brown or grayish from “intrinsic” staining due to age or medical issues might not have as much success.
Bleaching might not work either if you have crowns or tooth-colored fillings in your front teeth. It will not affect the color of artificial materials, so they will stand out if the rest of your teeth are whitened. Always talk with your dentist before you use teeth whitening products, especially if you have a lot of fillings or dark stains.
Also, remember that normal teeth whitening is not permanent. Your teeth will slowly become discolored again after any whitening treatment, but there are ways to keep that brightness lasting longer. You can avoid certain foods and drinks—red wine, coffee, junk food, sweets—and things like tobacco, which can stain teeth and create further oral health issues.
If you’re looking for a comfortable solution to your teeth whitening needs, My Family Dentistry offers one of the best treatments available.
KöR Deep Bleaching for a Lasting White
We’re proud to provide an advanced teeth whitening procedure called KöR Deep Bleaching, which has been shown to be extremely effective. Unlike other whitening methods, KöR works well on dark or severely stained teeth. Rather than using harsh chemicals to lift stains, the KöR process works by allowing oxygen to penetrate deep into the enamel of your teeth and increase their natural absorption of oxygen, which dissolves the food, drink, and chemical molecules that cause staining.
KöR is completely safe and, even better, it leaves the teeth brighter without additional sensitivity. The result is a bright, healthy-looking smile that is easy to maintain.
Want to learn more about how Dr. Wes Mullins and the My Family Dentistry team can help you achieve a brighter, more confident smile? Contact us today to learn about your options in a relaxing, spa-like environment.