Having a white smile helps people feel and look their most confident, and while we may not think much about it, straight white teeth are also a sign of success in the American culture. So, you want white teeth, but where do you start? There are a plethora of different in office and over the counter methods and products to make those pearly whites shine, but how do you know what is best for you?
The first step is to identify all of your options.
At-Home Teeth Whitening Products
Rinses are easy to use as all you have to do is swirl it in your mouth for up to a minute. Because the products whitening agent is only in contact with your teeth for just a short period of time, your teeth will become whiter gradually. Rinses can also prevent new stains on already white teeth.
Toothpastes contain ingredients that remove surface stains with gentle brushing and may produce gradual brightening.
Gel strips can be used on your teeth once a day for up to 2 hours for 10-20 days. This method leads to faster results, but they do require longer periods of use, which may not fit into your busy schedule.
These trays are filled with a gel and fit over your teeth. This method can be the most effective at whitening your teeth, but beware. If you leave the tray in for too long, you may begin to see damage to your enamel and, because they are not custom made, they are more likely to rub and irritate your gums.
Professional Teeth Whitening
Custom Whitening Trays
The most common treatment we offer at SDS is an at-home whitening tray. Our team will fit the tray to your teeth (reducing irritation to the gums) and provide gel and instructions for you to complete at home. After a few weeks of at-home treatment, you will be asked to return to the dental office for a consultation and to check your progress.
This procedure is designed for patients with more severe stains or discoloration, or who want quicker results. Our experienced whitening technician performs this procedure in office because the whitening solution is strong enough to cause burns on the gums or lips if applied improperly. In just ninety minutes, this treatment can fix even the most severe discoloration.
At-Home and In-Office
This is typically aimed at older patients, who have developed decades of stains and residue on their teeth. Similar to the procedure of washing a shirt in two stages, at-home pre-treatment breaks down the stains in the enamel, and in-office whitening finishes the job, revealing a stunning, bright smile.
So, which is right for you? To find out what kind of whitening treatment is suitable for you, it’s important to consult the person that knows your teeth best, your dentist. They will be able to tell you, in their professional opinion, which methods work best and which would be the most successful for your teeth.