How to Safely Whiten Teeth and Other Fun Facts About Teeth Whitening

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TEETH WHITENING FACTS

Teeth whitening is an extremely popular cosmetic dental procedure. But there are many myths and misunderstandings surrounding teeth whitening, and knowing the facts is important. So your friends at Bela Family Dentistry of Augusta are here to set the record straight. Read below for answers to frequent questions as well as the top nine teeth-whitening facts.

1. TEETH WHITENING PERFORMED BY YOUR DENTIST IS COMPLETELY SAFE.

At-home whitening comes with some risk, and for that reason, some of our patients are hesitant to try whitening at all. But teeth whitening is harmless to your teeth and mouth when done correctly. Professional office treatments typically use forms of peroxide as their active ingredients. These chemicals will not damage your teeth or the other tissues in your mouth. Other professional teeth whitening treatments may employ low-energy lasers or ultraviolet light, both of which are safe.

The only side effect you are likely to notice from teeth whitening is some limited teeth sensitivity. This sensitivity is transient and should pass within a few days after your treatment. If you have your teeth whitened in our office, be sure to follow your dentist’s aftercare instructions.

2. SOME SUBSTANCES ARE NOTORIOUS FOR STAINING TEETH.

Certain habits promote teeth staining. In particular, tobacco use will quickly and deeply stain your teeth. Both smoking and the use of smokeless tobacco are culprits here. Tobacco is horrible for your health anyway, so teeth stains are just another reason to quit.

Other substances that can leave you with darkened teeth include red wine, coffee, dark tea, and soda (both diet and regular). These beverages leave behind heavy stains, so enjoy them in moderation.

3. IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO AVOID ALL TEETH STAINS.

Even if you completely abstain from all the substances above, your teeth can still become stained. Normal foods cause stains that slowly build up over the years, and you simply cannot totally avoid this problem.

Yes, some foods are worse than others. Items like berries, dark fruit juice, and treats that contain artificial dyes are particularly likely to stain your teeth. Still, forgoing these foods will not completely save your teeth from stains.

4. STORE-BOUGHT WHITENING PRODUCTS OFTEN DISAPPOINT.

Toothpaste, gels, strips, and other teeth whitening products you purchase from the grocery or drug store may produce less than stellar results. These items often take months to show noticeable results if they ever make a difference at all.

The truth is that store-bought whitening products can be useful for preventing or slowing teeth staining, but they are often poor at removing stains. This can be particularly disappointing since these products are usually expensive. If you want quick and effective teeth whitening, visit your dentist instead of the toothpaste aisle.

5. WHITENING TREATMENTS WILL NOT PREVENT FUTURE STAINING.

We believe it is important for patients to have accurate expectations about their dental treatments. So you should know that professional teeth whitening only removes existing stains. The treatment will not prevent new stains from forming. In other words, if you smoke or drink five cups of coffee each day, your teeth will soon be stained once again.

6. TEETH WHITENING WILL NOT BRIGHTEN DENTAL RESTORATIONS.

Your teeth are naturally porous. These tiny pores allow stains to penetrate your teeth, but they also permit peroxide-based whitening solutions to eradicate those stains. However, dental restorations like crowns, white fillings, bonding, and veneers are not porous and will not lighten with teeth whitening treatments.

If you have crowns, veneers, etc. that have become stained, speak with your dentist about your options. Your dental work may need to be replaced, or your dentist could possibly offer other treatments to have your smile looking its best again.

7. IF TEETH WHITENING IS NOT RIGHT FOR YOU, YOU HAVE OTHER OPTIONS.

Sometimes it is just not possible to provide a patient with a perfectly white smile with whitening treatments alone. Your teeth may be too deeply stained, or you may be suffering from a different problem than simple teeth staining. For example, long-term use of certain antibiotics can yellow your teeth, and this issue typically cannot be resolved by whitening treatments.

If you find yourself in such a situation, consult with your dentist. They will likely be able to offer other options for a bright smile such as veneers or dental microabrasion.

8. HOME REMEDIES CAN BE A BAD IDEA.

Some people try whitening “home remedies” that include vinegar, baking soda, citrus juice, and even more questionable ingredients. Don’t go down this route. These substances can eat away at your teeth’s enamel, leave you vulnerable to tooth decay, cause pain, and permanently damage your teeth. Instead, leave your teeth whitening to the professionals at Bela Family Dentistry of Augusta.

9. MOST PATIENTS LOVE THEIR NEW, DAZZLING SMILES.

While teeth whitening is not the right answer for every cosmetic dental concern, the majority of patients who undergo whitening treatments are ecstatic about the new appearance of their teeth. Professional teeth whitening can take years off the look of your smile, making you appear more youthful.

Additionally, many patients find that they smile more often when they have white teeth. This increased self-confidence has a positive effect on relationships with family and friends as well as social situations. Get started on the smile you want today. Contact Bela Family Dentistry of Augusta now for an appointment.

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