Is Teeth Whitening Worth It? Ask Your Sharonville Family Dentist
Professional Teeth Whitening at Cincinnati’s Top Dentist Practice
Frown got you down? Unfortunately, we can’t all be born with perfect smiles. Even if we are, living life doesn’t make keeping your teeth white very easy. Lifestyle choices like smoking, wine or coffee drinking can discolor the teeth. Similarly, if you’ve damaged your enamel with lots of sodas or citrusy fruits, your teeth will take stains from just about anything. The good news is that teeth whitening can restore your teeth to their original pearly beauty. As a family dentist that practices cosmetic dentistry as well, we are a top teeth whitening dentist in Cincinnati, Sharonville, Blue Ash and beyond. We can help you rediscover your beautiful smile again.
If you have any cavities, they will first need to be completely filled before the whitening process. Otherwise, the teeth whitening chemicals can pass through the decay and damage the inner parts of your tooth. Your dentist will then photograph the teeth in order to map the progress of the treatment. If you’ve previously had dental bonding, you’ll need to work with your dentist on replacing the bonding either with new dental bonding or another form of tooth repair like veneers or implants. This is because dental bonding is made to match the shade of your teeth exactly, so if you get teeth whitening done, the bonding will not whiten with your natural teeth and therefore won’t match afterward.
What’s the Difference Between DIY Teeth Whitening Kits & Professional Teeth Whitening?
You can purchase over-the-counter teeth whitening kits that can do wonders for your teeth. But how do those kits compare to what you can get from a professional whitening from a cosmetic dentist?
Over the counter kits use a lower concentration of chemicals, so the whitening isn’t as effective. The trays in take home kits are also one-size-fits-all. Professional kits are custom fitted to your teeth so you get even coverage everywhere. The result is a highly targeted, more effective teeth whitening.
And while over the counter teeth whitening kits are safe, there is always some degree of risk involved. A dentist has the training to apply the whitening agent safely so there is less risk of damage to your teeth. Not to mention that some of us have really sensitive teeth or weaker enamel, and if over-the-counter teeth whitening kits are used incorrectly or too often, you can cause more damage, or even darkening, to your teeth by doing it yourself.
The Difference Between Vital & Non-Vital Teeth Whitening
There are two types of professional teeth whitening procedures: vital or non-vital whitening. Vital whitening uses a gel that contains some form of hydrogen peroxide. Non-vital whitening essentially bleaches the tooth, so it can only be done on a tooth that has already had a root canal and therefore does not have a live nerve. This type of teeth whitening is called “non-vital” because it can only be performed on teeth that are effectively dead. Dead teeth do tend to darken over time, which is why non-vital teeth whitening is an option we provide to patients.
Whitening your teeth safely and effectively usually involves 1 to 3 appointments, each lasting between 30 to 90 minutes. The duration of the procedure depends on the degree of stains to be removed.
The procedure may result in temporary sensitivity or minor gum irritation, but it’s not a painful or damaging process. Another advantage to having your cosmetic dentist perform your teeth whitening for you is that if you are having adverse side effects, you’re right here in our office for us to help.
Teeth Whitening Can Give You Better Dental Health
Cosmetic whitening may be considered part of cosmetic dentistry, but most Cincinnati dentists will tell you it can have great effects on your overall oral health. Teeth whitening tends to improve the gums and provide deeper cleaning benefits than traditional dental cleanings.
How the Teeth Whitening Process Works
First, we get you in for a thorough examination to see if you are the right candidate for teeth whitening. We’ll make a record of your current shade of teeth and then discuss your hopes and expectations. Next, our cosmetic dentist will polish your teeth with pumice, a gentle but grainy material used to remove any plaque on the surface. Then we isolate your mouth with gauze so your teeth stay dry. Retractors will be used to protect your gums, lips and tongue from the whitening agent. Then we apply the whitening agent to the front surface of your teeth. This solution is hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide as the bleaching agent. We’ll activate the solution with a special light or laser. Next, your teeth will be allowed to sit for 40 minutes. Once we’ve reached the right shade, we’ll rinse your teeth. Fluoride may be applied if you feel any tooth sensitivity, which is a common but temporary side effect for teeth whitening.
A Sharonville Family Dentist Trained in the Science of Teeth Whitening
We are a family dental practice in the Cincinnati and Sharonville area trained in the procedure of teeth whitening. We’ll begin by photographing your teeth to examine their condition and then recommend a program based on our findings.
Also realize that teeth whitening is not a permanent solution, especially if you smoke, drink a lot of coffee or wine, or consume foods that may have staining agents. You may need to have your teeth whitened on an annual basis to ensure a sparkling smile, depending on the degree of staining and your diet.
It’s also a good idea to consider diet and lifestyle changes. Quit smoking. Drink less coffee. Limit wine consumption, or choose white blends over red. That’s the recommendation of your Cincinnati dentist. If you think professional teeth whitening is right for you, give us a call today to schedule an appointment with one of our great family dentists.