Do you want to address yellow, discolored, or darkened teeth? Dr. Elizabeth Duling provides professional teeth whitening treatment to patients in Owens Cross Roads, AL. Her teeth whitening treatment is custom-made for each patient. Dr. Duling always takes each patient’s cosmetic goals into account before their care so they can receive the best results.
Whitening the tooth enamel can actually motivate patients to take care of their smiles and improve their oral health. Cosmetic dental treatments both enhance the look of the teeth and gums and can become a motivating factor to maintain brilliant results.
What Causes Tooth Discoloration?
There are multiple common factors that can cause darkened tooth enamel:
- Aging: As we age, our tooth enamel wears down, showing the underlayer called dentin. Dentin appears darker than the tooth enamel and can dull the appearance of the smile.
- Staining Foods and Beverages: Teas, coffees, fruits, and other foods or beverages contain staining agents called chromogens which darken the tooth enamel. Consider using a straw to limit your contact with chromogens in beverages. Eat berries, curry, soy sauce, and tomato-based foods in moderation.
- Smoking and Tobacco Products: Tobacco stains the tooth enamel and makes it appear more yellow.
- Poor Oral Hygiene: Not brushing and flossing regularly discolors the teeth. Using products containing fluoride or whitening toothpaste can help brighten the tooth enamel.
Take-Home Teeth Whitening
Dr. Duling offers convenient treatment with customized teeth whitening kits. These kits contain custom whitening trays and whitening gel. To create the whitening trays, Dr. Duling will take digital impressions of the teeth and work with a local dental lab to create the trays.
To use take-home whitening trays, you must first brush your teeth. Then, apply a small amount of whitening gel in each tray compartment. The trays keep the saliva from coming in contact with the gel, which can interfere with active ingredients within the bleaching agents. In addition, the trays allow each tooth to receive the correct amount of gel continuously.
Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Stains
Extrinsic tooth stains appear on the surface of your teeth. Intrinsic stains are found within the tooth enamel. Although over-the-counter toothpaste or whitening treatments can remove some extrinsic stains, professional teeth whitening can remove both types of stains. Intrinsic stains are more difficult to remove because they are caused by certain medications, injuries, or overexposure to fluoride.
However, there are some stains that may be stubborn and not respond to traditional whitening treatment. This is why it’s important to have a cosmetic consultation before committing to treatment. Dr. Duling will do a full oral exam and analysis to make sure that teeth whitening is ideal for you. I
f she determines that traditional whitening methods may not work, she’ll review other options that might be better suited for your needs.
Frequently Asked Questions About Teeth Whitening
What is the difference between store-bought and professional teeth whitening?
Professional teeth whitening it administered by a dental professional. This means it is safer and will applied in the correct manner. Additionally, professional whitening has a higher concentration of whitening agent. It will whiten your teeth faster and better. The only downside is it is more expensive.
How do I maintain the whitening results?
We suggest visiting our dental office for regular checkups every six months. This will give us the chance to clean and polish your teeth which will help them remain whiter longer. Furthermore, you should avoid foods and beverages that can stain your teeth. This includes tea, coffee, red wine, fruit juices, soda, berries, tomato sauces, and soy sauce. If you do consume these items, it is suggested that your brush your teeth afterwards or at the least rinse with water.
Smoking is also a major contributor to stained teeth and will quickly diminish your whitening results.
Is tooth sensitivity normal after whitening treatment?
A little bit of tooth sensitivity to hot and cold is normal after a tooth whitening treatment. However, it is only temporary and should subside after about two days. We suggest using a tooth sensitivity toothpaste for a few days after your whitening appointment.
Brighten Your Smile Today
Do you want to try professional teeth whitening? Call our Owens Cross Roads dental office at 256.202.4186. You can also schedule an appointment with Dr. Duling on our website. We will be happy to answer any remaining questions you may have about take-home teeth whitening.