Tag Archives: whitening options

Teeth Whitening: Optimizing Your Smile

One of the first things that people notice when they meet you is likely your smile. According to an American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry study, 96% of adults believe having an attractive smile can make a person seem more appealing. Teeth whitening is one common elective procedure you can choose if you’re seeking to improve your smile and appearance. After all, having a bright and whiter smile can help you feel confident and enhance your career and social opportunities.

What Does Tooth Whitening Involve?

Teeth whitening treatments can fix the two main types of discoloration: extrinsic and intrinsic. Extrinsic stains occur on the tooth’s surface, are cosmetic, and rarely pose a serious threat to oral health, while intrinsic stains occur on the inside of the tooth and are usually harder to treat.

Reducing intrinsic stains involves using a chemical reaction to change the teeth’s color. The most common ingredients found in teeth whitening products include hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide. The bleaching action comes from the carbamide peroxide, which releases about one-third of its content as hydrogen peroxide. Within 15 minutes of exposure, the hydrogen peroxide cuts through spaces in the enamel, giving you a whiter smile.

Differences Between In-Home and Dental Office Teeth Whitening

You have several options when selecting the best teeth whitening option for you. Whitening treatments include:

  • In-office whitening treatment: This option usually involves the application of a peroxide-containing gel or power bleaching, which uses concentrated solutions of hydrogen peroxide in water.
  • Over-the-counter whiteners: These products typically are peroxide-based and have lower concentrations of carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide compared to doctor-prescribed whiteners. You can choose from toothpaste with the American Dental Association Seal of Approval, gels painted directly onto teeth, and whitening strips.
  • Dentist-supplied products: These whiteners include gels delivered in custom-made trays, which you can either use for in-office treatment or at-home use. 

Professional At-Home Teeth Whitening Systems

Even if you don’t have time to visit the dentist’s office to have a teeth whitening procedure done, you can have a dental-supplied at-home whitening kit. Often, these professional kits work better than the over-the-counter whiteners because they’re geared specifically for your teeth. The dentist makes a tray in the office that fits in your mouth comfortably and snugly, limiting the exposure to your sensitive gum (gingival) area.

To get a professional at-home whitening kit, your dentist makes an impression of your upper and lower teeth. These impressions become your tray, and when it’s ready in about a week, the dentist will show you how to place the whitening gel in the tray. Although results vary, as long as you follow the instructions carefully, you should notice a change within a week of using these types of systems.

To learn more about teeth whitening or to schedule an appointment, contact us at Carolina Family Dentistry. Led by Dr. Ron Banik and his team, Carolina Family Dentistry uses state-of-the-art technology to provide patients with the best care. Reach out today to discuss teeth whitening options, so you can be on your way to having confidence in your smile.

How to Choose the Best Teeth Whitening Option for You

If you’ve ever tried whitening your teeth in the past, you probably know that the options are endless. Pastes, strips, and gels rule the shelves, plus in-office procedures. A new product seems to launch every week, promising quick whitening results. But how can you be sure you are choosing the most effective products for whitening? Here are the most common forms of whitening and information on which ones may work for you. 

Whitening Toothpaste 

The easiest method to implement into your daily routine is using a toothpaste with a whitening agent. This also happens to be the most affordable method as well. To see results, brush your teeth for at least two minutes, twice daily. This regime will help to fight stains and promote the whitening of your teeth. However, the results won’t be as strong as those of other options. To see the best results with whitening toothpaste, use it in conjunction with another recommended whitening solution.  

Whitening Strips 

The next option for teeth whitening and achieving a bright smile is to use over-the-counter whitening strips. Whitening strips contain a thin layer of hydrogen peroxide and bleach the surface stains of your teeth. They are a step above whitening toothpaste, but won’t give you the full whitening results you might be seeking. Depending on the kind you buy, the instructions will recommend you wear them anywhere from daily to once a month. Be sure to follow directions on the package for best results. 

Something to keep in mind is that whitening strips can cause tooth sensitivity. If you feel extreme sensitivity, stop using the product and speak with Dr. Banik about anti-sensitivity options. 

Take-Home Whitening Kits 

The last and most effective teeth whitening method that we recommend here at Carolina Family Dentistry is our take-home whitening kits. If you want a dramatic difference, this is the option for you. Plus, you can use other methods like whitening toothpaste and strips in conjunction with your kit. 

For best results, you should brush and floss before each treatment. You should be aware that you may feel sensitivity in your teeth from whitening. If you are using all three methods and are experiencing severe sensitivity, stop treatment and speak with Dr. Banik. 

Longing for a perfectly white and bright smile? You can achieve it — and quickly! Contact our office today to discuss whitening options and to schedule an appointment. We are here to make you feel confident in your smile.