What to Expect With In-Office Teeth Whitening
With the summertime upon us, it’s only natural to want to look and feel your best. One safe and effective way to revitalize your smile is to have professional teeth whitening done—which can leave your teeth several shades brighter after just one visit.
The dental health experts at Mi Casa Family Dentistry share additional information on how this form of cosmetic dentistry can help your smile shine its brightest this summer!
Types of Teeth-Whitening
When it comes to getting a twitter smile, it’s important to know the different options available to you when you speak with your dentist. There are 3 main types of whitening services you can get when heading to your dentist’s office:
Over the Counter Whitening Kits
Most over the counter whitening kits offer a “bleaching” solution of around 5-8%. Results often vary depending on how often and how long a person uses the kit. They are great for maintenance after whitening or if you’re looking only for a slight shade difference in your teeth. OTC whitening kits are safe for use at home without doctor supervision.
Customized vs Prefabricated Take-Home Whitening Kits
At Mi Casa Family Dentistry, we offer our patients the option of having take-home teeth whitening kits. Although these kits have more concentrated levels of “bleach” (usually around 15%) than over-the-counter solutions, they aren’t as strong as in-office treatments. Customized trays can be made to your unique dentition to allow better adaptation of the gel. Prefabricated trays are “one size fits all”, but are still able to offer a higher level of “bleaching” solution compared with OTC whitening kits.
Opalescence Boost whitening
Our in-office whitening treatment is Opalescence boost whitening. Using a hydrogen peroxide bleaching gel (up to 40%), your dentist can remove staining from your teeth without the use of a special light. This process typically takes about 1 to 2 hours. In office whitening offers the strongest level of whitening. Patients can expect to go 1-2 shades lighter than the shade they came in with. However, due to sensitive materials, this must be under doctor supervision for safety.
Preparing for Whitening
Professional Dental Cleaning
Before your dentist whitens your teeth, you will receive a professional dental cleaning. This is to ensure that all plaque, tartar, and other debris is removed from your teeth. Not only does this get your teeth nice and clean. It also helps to ensure better results during the whitening process.
Protecting Your Mouth
Once your cleaning has been completed, your dental care specialist will then prepare your mouth for the whitening process. While the whitening solution being used is completely harmless when being applied to your teeth directly, it can be irritating to your lips, cheeks, and gums. Your dentist will likely use a cheek retractor to protect these sensitive areas from coming in contact with the whitening solution as well as a gingival dam to protect your gums and soft tissue.
The Whitening Process
When it comes to the whitening process, here are the steps of what you can expect during your appointment:
- Your teeth will be coated in a gel-like whitening solution.
- The gel will be left on for 2 sessions of about 20 minutes each.
- Once completed, the mouth will be rinsed to remove the solution.
- Additional visits may need to be scheduled to reach your desired whiteness.
Aftercare for Your Smile
After having your teeth whitened, there are certain things you should keep in mind to help keep your smile at its brightest. For the first 48 hours, remember to keep these tips to help avoid unwanted staining:
- Avoid colorful foods and drinks.
- Avoid coffees, teas, wine, and sodas.
- Eat high-calcium foods like yogurt and milk.
- Eat light-colored foods like chicken, white cheese, and plain yogurt.
- Drink plenty of water.
If you have any additional questions about how you can help to keep your smile shiny and bright, be sure to reach out to your dental care team for more information.
Cosmetic Dental Care In Austin, TX
At Mi Casa Family Dentistry, we love to see our patients smile! Our team of cosmetic dental specialists combine science and artistry to address a wide variety of cosmetic issues that may be hindering your self-confidence.
To learn more about our cosmetic dental services or to schedule an appointment, call our office at (512) 270-2623 today!