You have a goal: a brighter, whiter smile. But what teeth whitening option will work best for you to help you achieve your goal? Here, our Saskatoon dentists explain your whitening options and the effects they can have.
What is teeth whitening?
Teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental procedure that is designed to lighten the colour of your teeth using peroxide-baed bleaching agents. As the active ingredients in the whitening solution break down, oxygen acts on the enamel of your teeth to whiten them.
What are my options for teeth whitening?
Here, you have a number of options available for whitening your teeth. It can be difficult to choose the right one since each offers its own advantages and positive results. As with any other procedure, each also hs some possible disadvantages.
In-Office Teeth Whitening
The most effective teeth whitening procedures are performed by your dentist in a dental office. This is because the whitening agents in your dentist’s gel are much stronger and produce much more effective results than over-the-counter products.
This procedure usually takes about one hour. Your dentist will use a concentrated whitening solution to remove surface stains from your teeth and to lighten their natural colour. This will yield results that may be a bit more efficient than at-home whitening solutions which can take days or weeks to finish treatment.
At-Home Professional Teeth Whitening Trays
This take-home option would be supervised by your dentist. During an initial visit to your dentist, a dental impression will be created to make your whitening trays.
You’ll take the whitening trays home and manage the teeth whitening application yourself. You’ll wear the whitening gel for between 30 minutes to a few hours a day, for 1 to 3 weeks depending on what your dentist prescribes.
The whitening solution will gradually remove surface stains from your teeth and lighten their natural colour.
Whitening toothpaste works to remove surface stains and slightly whiten teeth. Keep in mind, however, that whitening toothpastes won't affect the natural colour of your teeth and won't be able to lighten any stains that have penetrated below the surface of your teeth.
Enamel strengthening toothpastes can help to defend your teeth from cavities and protect your enamel from further damage, which can prevent stains from developing in the first place.
These small plastic strips are coated with peroxide-based gel. When you apply the strip to your teeth, the peroxide coating removes surface stains, lightening the colour of your teeth.
Typically, you apply whitening strips daily for between 2 and 3 weeks, keeping them on for no longer than 30 minutes at one time. Because these products contain very small amounts of peroxide, you will usually only see subtle results.
Porcelain veneers are razor-thin strips of porcelain that are affixed to the fronts of your teeth to improve their colour, shape and symmetry.
If only a few, or even only one, of your teeth are discoloured, porcelain veneers may be a practical solution to even out the colour of your teeth.
How do I know which are the best teeth whitening products?
The best teeth whitening products for you will depend on a number of factors, from personal preference to the time you have available in your schedule, and your budget. You may want to consider looking up teeth whitening reviews online for tips and ideas from other people who have opted to take the professional and/or at-home route.