It may be the most frequently prescribed dental treatment, but not everybody has undergone professional teeth whitening. For those who have, the amazing results that teeth whitening can produce in little time can have life-changing benefits. If you haven’t experienced those benefits yet, then you may wonder whether or not professional teeth whitening is a good idea. If your teeth are stained or have lost their luster, then ask your dentist how teeth whitening can bring back their youthful appearance!
How the treatment works.
The most common teeth stains develop on the surface of your teeth—a layer known as enamel. Tooth enamel is semi-translucent, and when it’s stained, teeth whitening works by chemically breaking up the stains and brightening the tooth structure underneath. The treatment involves a take-home kit complete with custom-made trays that fit over your teeth and a supply of potent bleaching gel. When used as directed, take-home teeth whitening only takes 10-14 days for optimal results.
Why over-the-counter options don’t work.
Over-the-counter teeth whitening products proclaim to produce the same amazing results as professional treatment, but the solution used in store-bought products isn’t nearly as effective. To be suitable for mass production, OTC products must be significantly diluted, which means results will often be unsatisfactory, and you may be tempted to overuse the product and damage your teeth.
If teeth whitening isn’t the right option.
In some cases, teeth stains might not be caused by external sources, but rather by damage or infection that originates within your tooth. If your teeth stains are intrinsic rather than extrinsic, then teeth whitening may not be the right option. Your dentist may recommend another cosmetic treatment, such as porcelain veneers, that can more effectively improve your smile’s overall appearance.