by West Coast Dental
A smile may seem like a simple action, but it is a powerful form of communication that transcends age, culture and language. In a survey conducted by Kelton Global for the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, 48% of U.S. adults believe that a smile is the most memorable feature of someone after first meeting them.
Nevertheless, many of us would like to change the appearance of our teeth. In fact, research by the American Association of Orthodontists found that nearly 90% of patients surveyed would like their teeth to be whiter. Fortunately, professional teeth whitening remains one of the most economical yet impactful ways of enhancing our appearance.
What Is Teeth Whitening?
Teeth whitening is a popular cosmetic dentistry procedure used to lift stains and lighten the color of teeth to look brighter, healthier, and more attractive. Patients can choose to attend in-office whitening appointments or opt for a special at-home kit provided by their dentist that uses stronger whitening gels than are available in over-the-counter teeth whitening products.
Should you choose in-home whitening, you’ll be provided with custom-made trays that are molded to the shape of your teeth. You’ll be shown how to fill these with teeth whitening gel and apply them at home and instructed how often you’ll need to use them to achieve your desired results.
Why Are My Teeth Discolored or Stained?
Although our natural teeth are not perfectly white, their color can be affected by some of our choices during our lifetime. Discoloration and staining can occur both inside the tooth and on the outer enamel causing them to look darker with yellow, grey or even brownish-black hues.
Some of the most common causes of teeth discoloration and staining include smoking, drinking or eating products that contain tannins such as coffee, red wine and berries. Failing to brush our teeth properly can also cause this. The natural aging process causes teeth to change color as the middle layer of the teeth — called dentin — begins to darken.
Why Choose Professional Teeth Whitening Services?
Research has found that people who have whiter teeth are generally considered healthier, happier, and more successful in their personal and professional lives. Unsurprisingly, we want to be seen in the same way and enjoy the same rewards for ourselves. The best way to achieve this is through professional teeth whitening. Here are some of the key benefits of bleaching your teeth.
Improve Your Confidence and Self-esteem
One of the most significant benefits of a white smile is the boost that it will give to your confidence and self-esteem. Many people attach a great deal of their self-worth to how they look. By improving the color of your teeth, you will feel good on the inside and look good on the outside. This could give you the added confidence that you need to put yourself forward for a promotion, ask someone on a date or jump at an opportunity that you might have otherwise avoided.
Our teeth may naturally darken with age and lifestyle, but teeth whitening can help to turn back the clock. By lightening our teeth’ color, whitening can help us retain our youthful looks for longer. Not only will your new smile be a focal feature of your face, but it will also perfectly complement any facial esthetic treatments you may choose to invest in later on.
Enjoy Better Oral Health
If you like the appearance of your smile, you’ll feel more committed to taking care of it and keeping it in the best possible condition. Most people who undergo teeth whitening naturally improve their oral hygiene routine to maintain the results of their treatment for as long as possible. The good news is that the more regularly and effectively you brush and floss your teeth, the better it is for your oral health.
Whether you choose professional, in-office teeth whitening or in-home whitening trays, you’ll be able to maintain your results for much longer than if you had opted for over-the-counter treatments. A dentist-supervised whitening is faster and produces greater changes than an over-the-counter treatment can. When you choose a dentist-supervised whitening treatment, you’ll get the results you hope for and avoid problems due to your teeth and gums’ sensitivity that can occur with a store-bought kit.
In-office Teeth Whitening Procedure: What to Expect
Professional teeth whitening is a painless experience that requires no anesthetic or sedation. Before whitening commences, the patient’s teeth are professionally cleaned to ensure that there is no plaque, tartar or other debris that could affect the outcome of the treatment. Once clean, your dentist will use special guards to protect the soft tissues of your mouth — including your gums, lips and tongue — so that they don’t come into contact with the teeth whitening gel.
This gel will be applied consistently and then activated using special teeth whitening light, which triggers the chemical reaction that breaks down discoloration and staining. After treatment is complete, the gel will be removed and you can rinse your mouth and leave the office immediately afterward. Several visits may be needed depending on the teeth’ initial color, how much lighter the patient wishes them to be, and how well their teeth respond to being bleached.
The California Dental Association (CDA) recommends that if you are looking for a brighter, whiter smile, you should consult with your dentist to determine if whitening is right. You can find out more about our teeth whitening services by scheduling an appointment at West Coast Dental today.
American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AAD) – Best Face Forward
American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics – “Tooth whitening in the orthodontic practice: a survey of orthodontists“
ASCH Dental – How Do Your Teeth Impact Your Happiness and Success?
California Dental Association (CDA) – Whitening