With the wedding season coming up, many brides and grooms-to-be are seeking ways to have whiter teeth. Even if you’ve had to change your wedding plans, you still want stunning pictures. At Lifetime Family Dental, teeth whitening is one of the main cosmetic dentistry services we offer. We have blogged before about whitening kits you can use at home, both professional and over-the-counter. Some are good, some are just OK, but nothing beats a professional in-office treatment. So, how is professional teeth whitening done?
Steps to a Brighter Smile
While the teeth whitening process is much simpler than a root canal, there are particular steps that need to be followed.
- Color matching: Most whitening procedures can increase the whiteness of your teeth by six or more shades. The first step is to record your present shade of white.
- Polishing: Before applying any whitening gel, your teeth are polished to remove any surface stains and plaque.
- Guards installed: Your teeth need to be dry before the whitening solution is applied. Gauze is inserted behind your teeth to protect the rest of your mouth. Retractors that keep your lips and cheeks out of the way are also sometimes used.
- Gum protection: Your gums are very sensitive to chemical abrasion, so a barrier is placed along your gum line to protect them from the solution.
- Coating the teeth: The whitening solution of hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide is applied to the front of your teeth.
- Activation: An ultraviolet or laser light may be used to initiate the curing process of the solution. The solution will be left on your teeth for up to an hour. During this time, another layer may be applied.
- Rinsing: When the time has maximum time allowed for the solution to act has passed, the teeth are rinsed. If the desired shade has been reached, you will be finished. Otherwise, you may need to schedule one or more additional visits.
There are foods and drinks that you should avoid after you have your teeth whitened. These include coffee, tea, fruit juices, tomato sauce, red wine and dark fruits. These have the potential to stain your newly whitened teeth. After a few days, you can begin to reintroduce some of these foods to see how your teeth respond.
Alternative whitening methods
At Lifetime Family Dental, we encourage you to come in for an in-office visit. We want you to have the whitest teeth and the very best smile. But we also recognize that professional in-office whitening is more expensive than home kits, even our professional ones. If you are not covered by dental insurance, we have flexible payment plans available. If that still doesn’t work for you, then by all means, please ask about our in-home kits. We can get close to the same results, although it may take a bit longer depending on the number of shades we need to cover.
Professional teeth whitening done right
Cosmetic dentistry is both an art and a science. We are passionate about both! Not to boast, but at Lifetime Family Dental, we believe we have the best staff in the Phoenix area. We invite you to find out for yourself. Give us a call for the best in professional teeth whitening. Your smile will dazzle and shine for years to come!