You’ve admired the great results that movie stars and friends have gotten from teeth whitening – but how does the procedure actually work? Our Collingwood dentists shed light on how the teeth whitening process helps to brighten your smile.
What is teeth whitening?
Our teeth naturally get darker as we age. This gradual change in appearance can be a side effect of lifestyle factors such as drinking dark beverages like tea, coffee or red wine, taking certain medications, smoking or simply general wear and tear from years of use.
Through the use of peroxide-based bleaching agents, professional teeth whitening treatments help to lighten the colour of your teeth and reduce the appearance of surface stains. As the peroxide breaks down, oxygen acts on tooth enamel and creates the whitening effect that brightens your smile.
Professional Teeth Whitening at Our Office
In-office professional teeth whitening is a popular treatment for many patients, as we can usually complete the full process in one or two sessions.
When you visit us for your in-office whitening treatment, the dentist will begin by placing a rubber shield over your gums to protect them from the whitening solution.
Next, they will apply the bleaching solution to your teeth with a small brush-like applicator. The solution will be left to work on your teeth for 15 minutes under a low-heat lamp. Your hygienist will then clear the solution and repeat the application process.
The in-office whitening process usually takes about 1 to 2 hours. For some patients, one session is enough to reach their desired level of whiteness, but depending on your specific case, you may require more treatments to achieve the whitening effect you had in mind.
Professional Teeth Whitening You Do At Home
Search “how to whiten teeth” online and you’ll soon find a wide range of at-home teeth whitening options. While these present one alternative, they are not typically as effective as the teeth whitening kits from our Collingwood dental office.
The teeth whitening solutions we offer come with custom whitening trays and detailed instructions on how to whiten your teeth in the comfort of your own home. Plus, you’ll have your dentist to supervise the process along the way, and the cost of your teeth whitening treatment may be somewhat less than with the in-office solution.
To begin, you’ll first need to visit the dentist so an impression of your teeth can be taken in order to create the custom whitening trays to precisely fit your smile. You’ll use these trays at home to apply the whitening solution to your teeth yourself.
Once your trays are ready, you will return to the dentist’s office to confirm they are a good fit. At that time you will be provided with your custom trays, the whitening solution, and clear instructions from your dentist to take home and use.
At home, you’ll wear the trays for about 30 minutes every day for approximately 2 weeks, until you achieve the desired level of whiteness. Be sure to keep your whitening trays once your treatment is complete, that way when it's time for a touchup you can just contact us for some more whitening solution. You can use the whitening solution to touch up your smile approximately every 6 months or so.