Perfectly white teeth are a dream for most people. Film stars have them. Runway models have them. Even our favourite professional athletes have them. So, why don’t the rest of us do the same? Most people don’t realise just how easy, safe and accessible teeth whitening can be. In fact, teeth whitening is the most often requested cosmetic dental treatment because it can dramatically improve your smile and self-confidence.
If you’re a little wary of undergoing teeth whitening treatment, here are a few key facts and misconceptions about how it works, so you can better understand how to get a movie star-quality smile.
Teeth whitening is safe
When performed by authorised professionals, there are virtually no risks involved with whitening treatments. Instead of forcefully and ineffectively removing deep stains through aggressive brushing, whitening agents safely permeate the tiny, natural openings in your tooth enamel to whiten on multiple levels.
Once these agents reach beneath the hard enamel surface to the dentin layer, the whitening gel works to remove superficial and deep stains that brushing alone can’t eradicate. In other words, your teeth will be whiter, for more consistent, long-lasting results.
Teeth whitening is best left to the professionals
There’s nothing inherently wrong with over the counter, shop-bought teeth whitening kits. They’re usually inexpensive, moderately effective, and easy to use. But for truly whiter teeth, you’ll almost always see better and faster results by going to a dental professional.
Not only does an in-chair whitening treatment enable your dentist to assess your needs accurately, but it also gives you a chance to communicate with a licensed professional about the entire process.
This can help eliminate any concerns about the treatment and your oral health while ensuring you know exactly what to do to maintain a brighter smile moving forward.
Whether it’s through customised teeth whitening plans, bespoke whitening trays, or the personal attention and know-how that dentists provide, the most-thorough option is almost always going to come from a professional.
Following a professional treatment, it’s normal to experience mild tooth and gum sensitivity. Your dentist can provide mouthguards to stave off these effects, but some irritation may still occur. Rest assured, that although the whitening process is active in the pores of your teeth, once the cleaning agents have done their job, your enamel will remineralise, and sensitivity will quickly return to normal.
The importance of a customised whitening plan
Depending on your needs, a dentist might suggest in-chair whitening treatments, or even a take-home teeth whitening kit, to get your smile thoroughly brighter. If your dentist recommends a take-home whitening treatment, it’s important to know the similarities and differences between these kits and an in-chair visit and how teeth whitening works.
During a typical hour-long whitening session, teeth are treated with a high-strength gel that is carefully applied to the tooth surface and left to work throughout the visit. During these sessions, your dentist can make sure the whitening gel is correctly applied, making any adjustments and additional applications, if needed.
While usually delivered with detailed instructions, home-based whitening treatments are largely left to the user’s discretion. To ensure these treatments deliver the desired results, your dentist will customise whitening tray to fit your mouth and teach you how to apply the gel. This not only increases comfort while wearing the device but also helps the whitening gel to cover the teeth evenly.
Although take-home treatments aren’t quite as fast as in-chair whitening, a customised tray from a dentist goes a long way toward delivering better results than shop-bought, “one size fits all” whitening gels and strips.
Your teeth (probably) won’t get whiter in just a few hours
We all love television ads, and the grand idea of an immediately whiter smile, but the effects of food and beverage choices, personal habits, and the natural ageing process don’t get wiped away overnight. Your teeth have probably been through a lot, requiring a customised program designed to maximize the effectiveness of the treatments.
Some people might see near-immediate results, but most take a little longer to achieve the desired whitening effect.
Having a bright, gleaming smile doesn’t have to be exclusive to red carpets. And, when done correctly through a licensed dental professional, it doesn’t have to be difficult, either. With just a few consultations, you can be well on your way to a brighter, whiter smile.
Speak with your dentist at Dental Spot on (02) 9158 6115 about how teeth whitening works and find a teeth whitening treatment plan that’s right for your unique smile.