How Teeth Whitening Works
At Gilbert Dental Group, there are two kinds of teeth whitening available: in-office and at-home treatments. In-office treatment typically provides results a bit faster, but at-home bleaching systems are also effective. With an at-home system, you will receive trays that fit over your teeth that you will fill with a bleaching solution and wear according to the instructions provided by your dentist. Both types of teeth whitening are completely noninvasive and painless, and they are both remarkably effective at removing most stains so your teeth look white again. They are also both more effective than teeth whitening strips and other over-the-counter remedies, which are also more likely to cause negative side effects, like sensitivity and gum irritation.
Common Causes of Teeth Staining
Food and drinks are responsible for the majority of stains. Any food or drink that is dark in color, from coffee, tea, and wine to blueberries, tomatoes, and raspberries, can cause discoloration to build up on your teeth over time. Smoking, in addition to being bad for your health, can also cause significant teeth staining. In some cases, medications, such as tetracyclines, can cause teeth to become yellow. If you think your medication is related, discuss your best options for teeth whitening with your dentist. This kind of staining does not always respond to standard whitening procedures and may be better addressed with other cosmetic treatments, like veneers.
Maintaining Your Whiter Smile
After teeth whitening, you will likely be motivated to keep your smile looking great. Although whitening can’t stop stains from forming again in the future, sticking to a conscientious oral hygiene routine will help to preserve your brighter smile. Some people opt to slow the speed at which stains accumulate by drinking beverages that stain with a straw and reducing their consumption. Swishing your mouth with water after eating or drinking a common staining culprit will also help. Quitting smoking can have a tremendous impact on keeping your smile looking its best, plus you’ll reap all of the additional health benefits of giving up the habit.