Professional teeth whitening treatment can have a beautiful effect on the appearance of your smile. Whether you are getting ready for an important social event and want to look your best, or if you simply would like to refresh the look of your teeth after signs of yellowing and staining have developed over the years, Dr. Trey Vereen and our experienced dental team offer a number of advanced treatments designed to meet your needs.
- Benefits of Teeth Whitening
- Professional Teeth Whitening Vs. Over-the-Counter Products
- In-Office Teeth Whitening with ZOOM!®
- Whitening for Sensitive Teeth
- At-Home Teeth Whitening
- Teeth Whitening Results
- What to Eat After Teeth Whitening
- Teeth Whitening Cost
What Are the Benefits of Teeth Whitening?
Even people who have taken excellent care of their teeth for many years are still susceptible to some level of yellowing and staining over time. This is a natural part of the aging process, and can also be due to the consumption of beverages such as coffee or wine. In addition, the use of tobacco products can be a major cause of tooth discoloration. Professional teeth whitening treatment can often be an ideal way to address general discoloration that is affecting overall smile aesthetics. Teeth whitening procedures such as ZOOM!® in-office treatment can lighten the teeth by several shades, helping patients achieve a whiter, healthier-looking smile. These state-of-the-art procedures are customized for each patient and overseen by our experienced cosmetic dentist to maximize the potential for successful results. Professional teeth whitening can ultimately give your smile a brighter, more beautiful sheen with results that typically last longer than over-the-counter options can achieve.
Professional Teeth Whitening Vs. Over-the-Counter Products
Speaking of over-the-counter teeth whitening products, let’s compare the differences between professional teeth whitening procedures vs. some of the whitening treatments you can find at a drugstore or a supermarket. One of the major distinctions between these two options is the fact that the whitening solutions used in professional treatments typically contain advanced bleaching agents that are simply not available with over-the-counter products. Professional whitening treatments are often composed of ingredients capable of penetrating deep into the tooth enamel, getting to stains and discoloration that have developed over several years. Another major difference: in-office teeth whitening procedures usually require only one whitening treatment to produce noticeable results, whereas over-the-counter products often necessitate consistent use over long periods of time to yield even just a slight level of lightening.
Plus, in-office and at-home whitening options available from a professional dental office such as ours are overseen by a skilled dentist, offering patients expert management of their treatment, which can increase the likelihood of successful outcomes. This is distinctly important in light of the rising popularity of “natural” teeth whitening trends such as charcoal teeth whitening and coconut oil teeth whitening, which have been described by the American Dental Association as having no evidence to support claims that they are effective (or even safe) teeth whitening remedies. All in all, a professional teeth whitening treatment is typically considered the most ideal way to effectively and successfully brighten the teeth with significantly noticeable results.
In-Office Teeth Whitening with ZOOM!®
ZOOM!® in-office teeth whitening is one of the most popular professional options available. During the treatment, the ZOOM!® whitening gel will be applied to the teeth, and then a special light will be guided over the teeth to activate the gel’s whitening agents. The process is designed to oxygenate the teeth enamel and dentin, leading to a much whiter and brighter appearance.
For most patients, ZOOM!® whitening treatments take approximately one hour here at our practice, and the results should be visible right after the procedure.
How Is Tooth Sensitivity Managed During Teeth Whitening?
During a whitening treatment, the teeth can become sensitive while the procedure is taking place and for a brief period afterward. This is normal and teeth sensitivity should gradually diminish. With this in mind, we like patients to have the most comfortable experience possible, so we encourage you to let us know before the treatment if your teeth are particularly susceptible to sensitivity. If so, we may be able to adjust the amount of bleaching gel, which can potentially reduce dental sensitivity. There are also some steps you can take that may work to lessen teeth sensitivity after an in-office whitening treatment or while using our at-home teeth whitening kit. These include:
- Use toothpaste products such as Sensodyne® or other options designed for sensitive teeth
- Use a toothbrush with soft bristles
- Rinse your teeth with a fluoride mouthwash
- Reduce the frequency of teeth whitening treatments
- Try to refrain from eating and drinking foods and beverages that are excessively hot/cold or high in acidity, at least temporarily
- Consider a custom nightguard (mouthguard) if you grind or clench your teeth while sleeping
We will be happy to talk more with you about effective ways to reduce tooth sensitivity, so don’t hesitate to ask!
At-Home Teeth Whitening
For patients who would like the convenience of whitening their teeth on their own schedule, Dr. Vereen offers a number of advanced at-home whitening options. These take-home kits include customized whitening trays that will be filled with a bleaching solution. In most cases, the trays can be worn for a brief amount of time each day and the treatment is complete once the desired level of whiteness is achieved. The at-home whitening treatments available from our practice are professional-grade options that offer several advantages over many of the whitening kits you can find at the local store. Our dental team can talk with you about your needs and goals and explain the process to you in detail so you will know what to expect.
How Long Do Teeth Whitening Results Last?
While the longevity of results can vary for each patient, many individuals experience the effects of in-office teeth whitening procedures for several months—even up to a year in some cases. The length of the effects is largely dependent on lifestyle habits and how well you take care of your teeth, so it’s important to limit your intake of foods and beverages that contain staining agents (such as red wine, coffee, tea, and blueberries). It’s also important to avoid smoking since tobacco can speed up discoloration of the teeth. While the results of teeth whitening are not permanent (the natural aging process and other factors will continue to cause yellowing of the teeth), outcomes can last much longer if you are able to take good care of your teeth and minimize habits that decrease the duration of the results.
What to Eat After Teeth Whitening
To maintain the results of your whiter, brighter teeth for as long as possible, it’s important to know the types of food and other items that are okay to consume following treatment, as well as items that are best avoided. A few of the foods and beverages that are good options to include in your diet (and good for your dental health, as well) after teeth whitening are:
- Some kinds of cheese
Most clear beverages and white foods (such as potatoes, vanilla pudding or yogurt, pasta, white bread, and others) are better than others that may contain staining agents. Items such as berries, red wine, coffee, tea, colored juices, sodas that are not clear, red sauce, ketchup, and soy sauce should be minimized or avoided. Also, the use of tobacco products, and even alcohol, can significantly discolor the teeth and impact the effects of teeth whitening treatment.
It can be a challenge to stay away from some of the foods and drinks we love, so if you don’t find it possible to completely cut items such as coffee, berries, or others from your diet, just be sure to brush—or at least rinse—your teeth immediately after you consume them to decrease the chances of staining. If you would like a more extensive list of foods and beverages that can serve as ideal options after teeth whitening, we’ll be happy to provide one.
How Much Does Teeth Whitening Cost?
The cost of teeth whitening treatment is highly variable depending on the type of whitening procedure you undergo. Cost factors that are taken into account for a customized teeth whitening treatment include:
- The whitening system utilized
- Whether the procedure involves office-based treatment, a take-home whitening kit, or both
- The extent of treatment necessary—i.e. the severity of discoloration and the amount of whitening that will be recommended in order to achieve optimal results.
We will provide a total cost estimate right after your teeth whitening treatment plan is developed so you will know what to expect before you undergo the procedure. Our practice wants to make paying for dental care as convenient as possible for all of our patients. In addition to accepting a comprehensive selection of payment methods, we work with a reputable lending agency that offers affordable dental financing plans for qualified applicants. A financing arrangement through CareCredit® can help individuals pay for their teeth whitening treatment with an array of monthly payment plans from which to choose.
Would you like to learn more about our teeth whitening options? Please contact us today with any questions you may have, or to schedule a consultation at the office of Trey Vereen, DMD.