New Year, New Whiter Teeth
The new year has arrived, bringing with it new goals and new resolutions. Many of us dust off the weights or running shoes and commit to a healthier diet and lifestyle. For a few, there is a commitment to getting their smile back into shape. A return to beautiful, white, straight, healthy teeth surrounded by pink, healthy gums.
As we grow up, we acquire stains on our teeth from different foods in our diet. Coffee, tea, sodas, fruit juice, and red wine are some of the worst. These stains accumulate over time and darken our teeth. Some teeth and even certain areas of individual teeth may stain worse than others. Staying on top of recommended teeth cleanings will help keep these stains at bay. Some teeth though, need a little extra boost to get them back to being pearly white.
Probably the most widely used tooth whitening options are over-the-counter products. It seems like everywhere there are advertisements for “whitening” toothpastes, mouth rinses, gels, and the like. Be wary of any product that is supposed to whiten your teeth, but doesn’t actually touch your teeth for more than a few seconds or minutes. There are some over-the-counter products that use similar chemicals as professional products. These do whiten teeth to an extent. It generally takes more time because the concentration of the whitening agent is not as strong as what you can get from your dentist.
The second option for whiter teeth is to have your dentist make you a set of take-home bleaching trays. These trays are custom fit to your teeth from a model taken at the dentist’s office. You then place the prescription strength bleaching gel into the trays and wear them once or twice a day. Depending on what has stained your teeth, you will see results in a few days to a few weeks.
If you are a person who wants instant results and don’t have the patience to wear trays at home, then in-office whitening is for you. You go to the dentist for a couple of hours and walk out with whiter teeth. This is the “laser” whitening that used to be seen on TV. Technology has advanced so that it can be done with or without the laser light. This is the most costly way to whiten your teeth, but many people prefer the convenience and quick results.
There are several ways to get teeth back to white. Whatever option you choose, it would be good to consult with your dental team and make sure that you don’t have any front fillings or crowns that would clash with your new, whiter teeth. They can also help with the straight, healthy teeth and pink healthy gums.
Until next week, keep on smiling.
-Please send questions to Drs. Parrish at www.ParrishDental.com.