Teeth WhiteningStockton, CA
Healthy teeth exude confidence. A smile that is bright and white can lead to higher self-esteem that comes across in professional and social situations. Teeth become discolored over time from smoking, inconsistent hygiene routines, and diet. Teeth whitening is a dental procedure in which the external color of teeth is lightened.
Teeth whitening is available at Brookside Orthodontics in Stockton and the surrounding area. Many choose professional teeth whitening before bridal photoshoots or a special event. Our orthodontist can determine suitability for the treatment and help patients achieve a lighter shade of teeth in their smiles.
Brushing and flossing keep teeth clean but often do not remove all the stains. Teeth whitening is a great way to improve a smile. Call us at 209-732-1124 to make an appointment for a consultation to discuss teeth whitening methods that fit your needs.
What Is Teeth Whitening
Tooth enamel is the hard surface of the teeth that protects against decay. This enamel is the strongest mineral substance in the body, even more durable than bone. However, it is vulnerable to decay and discoloration. Wine and coffee can stain the external surface of the teeth. In some cases, the internal structure of teeth can discolor from the use of certain medications or due to trauma to the tooth. Enamel thins with aging, which can also cause discoloration.
Teeth whitening is a process to remove those stains. Often professional cleaning is enough to remove stains, but orthodontists can use bleaching gels or agents to remove more permanent stains. There are many options for professional teeth whitening. The method that effectively removes tooth stains for a given patient depends on the reason the teeth are stained and the overall health of the mouth.
Benefits of Teeth Whitening
Teeth whitening offers many benefits, the most obvious being appearance. The American Dental Association recommends teeth whitening as one popular method to improve a smile. Having a brighter, whiter smile can restore self-confidence. Here are other benefits that may not be as obvious:
Improved Oral Health
Removing stains strengthens teeth and encourages a person to take care of teeth at home, leading to better oral health.
Minimizes the Effects of Aging
Whiter teeth give a person a younger appearance and reduce the effect of wrinkles. A bright smile gets the focus, rather than frown lines.
A Bright smile boosts confidence
Patients who achieve a brighter smile can experience a boost of confidence in social settings. Along with that, people who normally avoid smiling with teeth in pictures will be able to smile without concern.
The Teeth Whitening Process
The ADA recommends talking to a dentist or orthodontist about whitening options before beginning any teeth whitening procedure to find the most effective technique. There are two basic methods to get a brighter smile:
The orthodontist applies a protective gel to the gums to protect them from the bleaching agent, and then the bleach is then applied to the teeth. The time the bleach remains on the teeth depends on many factors, with some bleaching agents requiring a heat or light application. This type of use can lighten teeth by several shades in one appointment.
Custom At-home Bleaching from an Orthodontist
With this method, the orthodontist creates a custom mold of the teeth. Instructions are provided for the patient to use a bleaching solution at home. The solution is placed into the tray, which is then fit on the teeth and left on for the recommended time. This procedure takes longer than in-office bleaching but is effective.
Avoiding Store-Bought Products or Solutions
While there are several over-the-counter whitening products available, these are generally not as effective as those available from an orthodontist. The whitening solutions are often less potent, so do not work as quickly or provide as lasting results. In addition, without custom-fit trays, there is a higher chance of the gums being exposed to the solution, causing increased sensitivity.
Regardless of which method is chosen for teeth whitening, to maintain the results of treatment, the teeth need to be taken care of. Brush twice daily and floss once a day. Rinse the mouth out after drinking tea, coffee, or wines that stain teeth, and avoid energy drinks and sodas, which are acidic and staining. Foods that are strongly colored, such as soy sauce, curry-based sauces, or bright berries, can also stain teeth.
We would love to help you get the whiter smile that gives you confidence. Learn more about teeth whitening options today. Call Brookside Orthodontics at 209-732-1124.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does teeth whitening last?
Teeth whitening is not permanent. Many people may need a touch-up after a year or so. There are ways to extend the effects of whitening. Regular brushing and flossing, bi-annual professional cleanings, and avoiding food and drinks that stain the teeth will keep the teeth whiter longer.
Are there side effects with teeth whitening?
After teeth whitening, the most common side effect is tooth sensitivity. The enamel of the tooth is temporarily weakened from the bleach. Using a fluoridated toothpaste re-strengthens the enamel. A toothpaste designed for tooth sensitivity can lessen the effect.
Is teeth whitening safe for dental restorations?
The teeth whitening bleaching agents do not damage veneers, crowns, or other dental implants. Keep in mind, however, that teeth whitening bleaches will not lighten discolored dental restorations. Discuss options with a dentist or orthodontist for whitening dental restorations.
Can I control how white my teeth get with teeth whitening products?
With professional teeth whitening methods, the dentist can achieve a particular look. The time it takes to get a white smile depends on the current state of the teeth and what level of whiteness is desired. Once the teeth get to the desired shade, treatment is stopped.
Does teeth whitening work for teeth stained by smoking?
Teeth whitening methods are usually effective for removing nicotine-stained teeth. However, to maintain the look, patients should stop using tobacco to avoid further staining the teeth. If teeth whitening is not successful, explore other options with a dental provider.
Can adolescents or children get teeth whitening?
Teeth whitening is a procedure that is safe for anyone but is typically recommended for adults. Children and teens who want teeth whitening should talk to the orthodontist before proceeding. Teenagers who have braces removed may benefit from teeth whitening treatment.
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