Do you wish you had a brighter smile?
Perhaps you’ve noticed some staining and discolouration that you would like to get rid of? Teeth whitening is a popular cosmetic treatment, and for good reason — a clean, health-looking smile goes a long way in enhancing one’s overall appearance.
There are a number of options when it comes to teeth whitening — here’s what you need to know…
How does at-home bleaching work?
Teeth bleaching products, which can be used at home, generally come in the form of gel. The gel is placed in a mouth guard, which is custom-fitted. Each bleaching product is slightly different — in some cases, the formula is used overnight for one or two weeks, while in other cases, it is used twice a day for two weeks.
At Somerset Dental, we offer Pola whitening kits. This type of product works very effectively as it is specially formulated with a stronger bleaching agent than is available over-the-counter. Your dentist will custom-make the whitening trays to perfectly fit your teeth and jaws. It’s important that the whitening trays fit your mouth properly as this will ensure that the whitening agent remains in direct contact with your teeth for the recommended length of time.
What is dental bleaching?
Dental bleaching is a procedure that is done in your dentist’s chair. Before the procedure begins, your dentist will clean your teeth to remove any bacteria and food debris that might be contributing to staining and discoloration. During the actual whitening procedure, a whitening gel that contains a form of hydrogen peroxide is applied to the teeth. A specialised led light is used to activate the gel, which speeds up the process. The whitening process generally takes between 30 and 90 minutes depending on your expectations, and you may need to come in for follow-up treatments to achieve the best possible results.
Do teeth whitening toothpastes work?
While all toothpastes help to remove some surface stains from the teeth, specially formulated teeth whitening toothpastes include chemicals and polishing agents that tend to help with additional stain removal. Unfortunately, however, these products can’t actually alter the intrinsic colour of the teeth. If you’re looking for a way to really brighten your smile, it’s better to consider a professional dental bleaching treatment or a custom bleaching kit recommended by your dentist.
Are there any other options?
Teeth bleaching is not an option for everyone — tooth-coloured fillings or bonding in your front teeth won’t bleach properly. In this case, porcelain veneers might be a more suitable solution. Made from tooth-coloured materials, veneers are thin restorations that are designed to cover the front of the teeth. Your teeth will be specially prepared for the veneers, and your dentist will take a mould of your teeth. The moulds will then be sent to a dental laboratory where they will be used to create custom veneers to fit your mouth perfectly. Once the veneers are ready, they are placed over your teeth. Porcelain veneers are stain-resistant and look and feel just like natural teeth. For this reason, they are a great way of enhancing your smile and concealing discolouration that can’t be treated with a bleaching treatment.
If you’re interested in veneers, we offer a consultation appointment, in which we will walk you through the entire process. If you decide you would like to go ahead with the treatment, we offer a trial with temporary veneers so that you can get a sense of what they look and feel like.