Professional teeth whitening treatments sometimes involve using a special light to speed up the process. Most people will need teeth whitening treatments at some point in their lives as it is normal for stains and discoloration to build up on teeth surfaces over the years.Yellow teeth are a natural part of the aging process, and…
Before and After Your Teeth Whitening Procedure
Teeth whitening treatments can drastically improve the way that your teeth look after a single trip to the dentist. These treatments involve coating your teeth with bleaching agents like hydrogen peroxide and hydrogen carbamide.
There are countless teeth whitening products available nowadays, and many can be purchased over the counter at grocery and drug stores all over the country. However, none of these products are as effective as the prescription-grade products used by dentists for in-office teeth whitening sessions. A single treatment can improve the whiteness of a patient’s teeth by up to eight shades. Teeth whitening is effective on most types of stains that develop on teeth, like the yellowing that occurs with aging, stains caused by foods/beverages, and stains caused by smoking tobacco products.
What to expect before and after the teeth whitening treatment
Before a patient gets their teeth whitened, a dentist might perform other treatments in preparation for the procedure. Common examples include the following.
1. Fixing damaged teeth
Teeth whitening products contain powerful whitening agents that can penetrate the inner layers of teeth. The whitening process weakens teeth enamel and typically expresses itself with teeth sensitivity that lasts for a few days.
Prior to whitening treatments, a dentist will examine the patient’s teeth, looking for damage to teeth structures. Issues like cavities or chipped teeth are treated before proceeding with whitening treatments.
2. Teeth cleaning
Dentists often recommend cleaning teeth before whitening treatments. Oral bacteria convert the sugars in food particles into plaque, which can harden into tartar when left on teeth due to poor oral hygiene. Plaque can be removed by brushing, but tartar needs to be scraped up with a scaler.
Getting rid of tartar deposits on teeth improves their whiteness because tartar gives teeth a yellow tint. It also allows for more effective treatments.
Teeth whitening treatments typically last somewhere between 60 to 90 minutes. It typically involves the patient biting down on a mouthpiece that has been filled with the bleaching agent. After the treatment, the dentist might strengthen the patient’s enamel by performing a fluoride treatment. Follow-up treatments might be scheduled if the patient's teeth have not yet reached the desired shade of white.
Having pearly white teeth due to whitening treatments does not always mean that they will always stay that way. Teeth are constantly being bombarded by all sorts of things that can stain them, so it is up to each patient to take the steps to maintain the results of their whitening treatments. Simple things that patients can do to keep their teeth white include:
- Practice good oral hygiene
- Minimize color-rich foods and beverages, like pasta sauce and coffee
- Use a whitening toothpaste once a week to remove surface stains
- Purchase an at-home whitening kit from the dentist for convenient follow-up whitening treatments as needed
Get the white teeth that you want
Ready for a white set of teeth that you will be proud to show off? Give us a call or visit our Dallas clinic to learn more about whitening treatments.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Teeth Whitening in Dallas, TX.
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