How Do Dentists Whiten Teeth?
If you regularly brush your teeth, avoid known staining agents such as coffee, tea, and cigarettes, and take overall good care of your teeth but are still plagued with unsightly tooth stains, getting a teeth whitening dentist procedure might be a good option for you.
Even someone who takes the utmost care of their teeth will still fall victim to staining and yellowing. That is because over time, everything you put in your mouth builds up over the tooth enamel. The film it creates can be removed, but if left on too long, it can begin to penetrate beneath the surface and form brown or yellow stains. Whiteners work by creating a chemical reaction with either carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide that breaks down the stain-forming compounds. This oxidation reaction results in brighter, whiter looking teeth after each use.
Dentists whiten teeth very carefully, using a solution of a high concentration to make your smile much brighter by the time you leave the office. At this point you might be asking, “What do dentists use to whiten teeth?” The most popular chemicals used by dentists to whiten teeth are hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide. More often, they will use hydrogen peroxide as it breaks down the compounds quicker for shorter visits and less return time.
Dentist Recommended Teeth Whitening
Dentist approved teeth whitening will usually be in-office teeth whitening. They recommend this because they know the complications that can arise as a result of amateur whitening are often not worth it.
If the patient does not want to pay the high cost of an in-office treatment, the second-best option as far as dentist approved teeth whitening goes is dentist-sold kits or strips. Whitening products purchased from a dental office are eligible for a seal of approval by the American Dental Association, assuring the patient that what they’re purchasing is safe and effective.
What Options Are Available at a Dentist’s Office?
At a dentist’s office, a patient can choose to receive a treatment that includes a peroxide gel and a halogen lamp, a treatment of just a peroxide gel application, or take home a kit or strips to whiten at their own convenience.
The procedure that includes the light is the most expensive but most effective and usually only takes one visit. A peroxide treatment sans-lamp will be more affordable but may require a few touch-up visits. Lastly, the kits or strips will be much more affordable and are meant to be used over several weeks.
Techniques Dentists Use
When performing a teeth whitening process at the dentists, they take detailed care of the patient’s mouth to ensure the safest and most effective treatment and results. First, a guard is created along the gums to protect them from the peroxide solution. The dentist uses a lip and cheek retractor to gain as much access to the teeth as possible before applying the peroxide gel. Once the gel is evenly applied, they will turn on the halogen lamp if that is part of the procedure. The light will work with the gel to whiten the teeth quicker. Fifteen minutes to one hour later, the patient’s teeth will look brighter than ever.