Teeth get stained over time. Every time you drink a cup of coffee, eat food covered in barbecue sauce, enjoy a glass of red wine or pop blackberries into your mouth, you’re staining your teeth a little bit. Of course, you should be able to enjoy the foods and beverages that you love, without worrying how they’ll affect your teeth.
Fortunately, you can! By getting your teeth professionally whitened, you can have the foods you love to eat and a beautiful smile as well. If you’re thinking about getting your teeth professionally whitened, you might be wondering how it works and how often you should professionally whiten you teeth. Here’s what you need to know.
What Is Professional Teeth Whitening?
Professional tooth whitening is done at the dentist’s office. Before the procedure begins, your dentist will make a record of the shade of your teeth; then, if needed, the dentist will polish your teeth to remove any surface-level stains.
Your dental assistant will put gauze and protective barriers in your mouth to prevent your cheeks, tongue, lips and gums from being exposed to the whitening solution. To whiten your teeth, your dentist will apply a solution of carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide on your teeth.
A light or laser may need to be applied to the area to activate the solution. The solution will be left on your teeth for the length of time it takes to reach your whitening goals.
We recommend taking Tylenol prior to your appointment as teeth are sometimes sensitive with the whitening procedure. If your teeth are not as white as you desire when the whitening procedure is over, your dentist may recommend a take-home whitening pen.
What Are the Benefits?
There are many reasons to get your teeth whitened at the dentist’s office!
- More confidence in your smile. Stains on your tooth enamel can leave you feeling self-conscious about your smile. Getting your teeth whitened makes it easier to smile with confidence.
- Enhanced appearance. White teeth are beautiful! Getting your teeth professionally whitened at the dentist can enhance your beauty.
- Efficiency. Dentists are good at whitening teeth efficiently and effectively.
Is Professional Teeth Whitening Better Than DIY Whitening?
Home remedies may whiten your teeth by small degrees. There are several DIY teeth whitening methods.
- Brush with baking soda. Mix baking soda and water into a paste. Dip your toothbrush in the paste and brush your teeth.
- Swish with hydrogen peroxide. Mix equal parts hydrogen peroxide and water and swish them in your mouth. Do not swallow.
- Brush your teeth with whitening toothpaste. There are several brands of tooth whitening toothpaste that contain ingredients like baking soda. They whiten your teeth and taste better than homemade baking soda paste.
These DIY remedies may remove some surface-level stains from your teeth but cannot address problems that go deeper than surface-level stains.
When trying to whiten your teeth at home, talk to your dentist before using any methods that you’ve read about on the Internet. Not all home remedies work and some could be counterproductive.
If choosing a whitening toothpaste, be sure to select toothpaste from a brand that has the seal of the American Dental Association.
How Often Should Professionally Whiten Your Teeth?
Whiten your teeth with the dentist once annually, unless otherwise directed by your dentist. You can also perform touch-ups as needed at home, but check with your dentist first. Over-whitening your teeth can have permanent negative effects on your teeth.
What Else Can You Do to Keep Your Teeth White?
Once you’ve whitened your teeth, there are many things you can do to keep your teeth white and avoid further staining.
Know Which Foods Stain Your Teeth
Dark-colored foods and acidic foods can stain your teeth. Common examples of foods that stain your teeth include:
- Red wine
- White wine
- Tomato sauce
- Soy sauce
- Balsamic vinegar
Swish With Water After Eating Staining Food
Swishing with water after eating staining food can help wash away the foods that cause the stains. Avoid washing with anything that’s sugary or acidic.
Brush Your Teeth Mid-Day
Brushing your teeth in the middle of the day (in addition to brushing your teeth first thing in the morning and in the evening) prevents plaque from building up on your teeth, which can prevent staining.
Smoking causes teeth to become stained. If you smoke, stopping the habit can protect your teeth and gum health in a variety of ways. Need help to stop smoking? Talk to your doctor to find a support program in your area.
Get Your Teeth Cleaned Regularly
See your dentist every six months to get your teeth cleaned and to remove the plaque from your tooth enamel. This prevents stain/bacteria from building up on your teeth and can help keep your teeth white.
Ready to Get Your Teeth Whitened? Contact Your Dentist In Lakeland, FL
Wondering how often you should professionally whiten your teeth? Call your dentist in Lakeland, FL to find out more about whitening your teeth. Call Kawveh Nofallah DMD to make an appointment or ask your questions about professional tooth whitening with your dentist.
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