Do you need teeth whitening? Whether you’re a lover of red wine or a coffee aficionado, you may just find that your teeth simply aren’t the pearly whites that you’d like for them to be. Even with a good dental health routine that includes brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash after every meal, it’s still possible to see our teeth start to lose their bright white luster.
There are a number of over-the-counter teeth whitening solutions on the market, and some of them may work well for the needs of some people. It is however better to consult with your dentist if you are not satisfied with the current color of your teeth.
Why shouldn’t I use an over the counter product?
Whitening toothpastes, strips, and gels that are sold over the counter can offer some results. They typically only produce surface results. These products are effective for treating surface stains, but they cannot treat the intrinsic discoloration that is seen beneath the tooth’s protective layer of enamel.
Even if you are treating surface stains it may take several applications and a considerable amount of time before you are able to see the results that you want to see. Another concern is that your teeth may become somewhat more sensitive after using teeth whitening products, and you may also experience some inflammation and irritation to your gums.
If you have implants, crowns, or bridges, you may not see the results you’re looking for because these dental prosthetics cannot be whitened by over the counter whitening products. You will need to speak to your dentist about how you can unify the color of all of your teeth.
What can cause dental staining?
Dark drinks that include teas, coffee, soda, and red wines are known for their ability to cause surface staining. Foods like those with tomato sauces, blueberries, and pomegranates may be healthy options, but they can also be staining culprits.
Poor oral health care habits, smoking, and simply aging can also contribute to teeth staining. Brushing, flossing, and using a good mouth rinse can help to keep the surface of your teeth free from stains. There are also some medications that can contribute to tooth staining, and this is something that even brushing and flossing can’t help you to avoid.
How can my dentist help?
Unlike the over the counter products that promote a one-size solution, your dentist can take a custom approach to your teeth whitening. Your dentist can address your specific dental needs, based on the current shade of your teeth, the shape of your teeth, and any tooth or gum sensitivity you may be feeling currently. If you have had any restorative work done, your dentist can take this into consideration to ensure that the whitening procedure doesn’t do any damage to your dental work.
How long does teeth whitening last?
Even getting professional teeth whitening completed by your dentist is not a permanent solution. Our teeth are constantly exposed to food and drink that can leave them looking lackluster. With a good oral care routine that includes using the right toothpaste, flossing, and a mouth rinse, your results should last for several years. Maintaining your routine visits with your dentist will also help to keep your whole mouth healthy.
Whether you’re getting chairside whitening done, or taking home a custom solution, you’ll find that working with your dentist is one of the best ways for you to get that bright white smile that you’ll be proud to show off at every opportunity.
Call Ideal Smiles Dental today, at 718-227-7400, to schedule your teeth whitening consultation.