Teeth whitening procedures have gotten more and more popular in recent years, but all of them are not created equal. If you’re considering getting your teeth whitened, it’s important to find out which teeth whitening procedure is best for you; otherwise, you may end up with results that are less than satisfactory or even harmful to your teeth and gums. There are several different procedures available, but here are the top three most permanent teeth whitening procedures currently on the market today… (Use that at beginning of sentence if referring to a specific procedure)
In-Office Teeth Whitening
Perhaps you’ve tried one of those at-home teeth whitening kits, only to find that, like most of us, you just don’t have a deep enough shade of yellow to warrant anything more than a light lift. If so, consider in-office whitening. In-office whitening involves bleaching your teeth for 30 minutes—or longer—with peroxide or hydrogen peroxide. For more serious stains and cases where sensitivity is an issue, Dr.
Professional Home Teeth Whitening Kit
A more affordable option, professional home teeth whitening kits can cost anywhere from $200 to $500 per kit. While a little pricier than over-the-counter options, they often include a high concentration of carbamide peroxide and are used professionally by dentists and hygienists. These kits also allow you to whiten your teeth at home with no assistance or supervision. Before purchasing one of these kits, talk to your dentist about which one is best for you; there are subtle differences between each brand that might influence your choice.
DIY Home Teeth Whitening Kit
There are several reasons why you may be considering DIY teeth whitening for your smile. Maybe you have dentures that won’t fit over a custom-made tray, or maybe your teeth naturally darken with age and don’t respond well to store-bought toothpaste. Whatever your reason, using at-home whiteners like Zoom! is a fairly simple process and will give you great results if used correctly.
DIY from the Pharmacy
Unless you’re a dental professional, tooth whitening is probably best left to trained professionals. There are many teeth whitening kits available at your local pharmacy, though they aren’t really designed for anything other than minor stains and surface damage. They also tend to be very abrasive and can cause some damage to your gums if used too often. Dentists perform a number of different types of whitening procedures. Whichever procedure you choose should depend on how dark your teeth are in comparison to their natural color and how sensitive your teeth are as well as how quickly you want results (and what type of dentistry training you have). Ask your dentist which procedure would be right for you and then make an appointment so that he or she can perform it.
Depending on how long you’ve had stained teeth, it might be too late for a non-invasive treatment. For example, if you’ve had a tooth sensitivity or discoloration problem for years and never took care of it, an LED device can still work to help brighten your smile—just not as well as it would have if you’d started using one in your teens. That said, research has shown that LED devices are effective at preventing future stains from developing. Make sure to talk with your dentist before choosing a whitening method so that he or she can assess whether it’s worth investing in a LED device now.
Over-the-Counter (OTC) Strips and Gels
Many over-the-counter options are inexpensive and easy to use, but they’re not that effective and they only last a few days. To be clear, any teeth whitening procedure is better than none at all. Even if you don’t see a noticeable difference, it can help prevent staining from recurring. However, OTC products won’t dramatically brighten your smile in a couple of hours like many other teeth whitening procedures can.
Long-lasting teeth whitening procedures can still make your teeth look great, but they only last between two and four years before you need to go back for more work. The good news is that there are permanent solutions to making your teeth whiter. One option is getting dental sealants applied by a dentist. They cover exposed areas of your tooth’s surface and protect them from tooth decay and staining over time. Sealants are a great way to keep any kind of stains or discoloration from returning, so if you have an active lifestyle that makes it hard to see your dentist on a regular basis, they may be a good choice for you.
Invision Aligners are clear, removable aligners that help straighten teeth without metal wires or brackets. The aligners can be removed for eating and cleaning, and typically are worn only at night (although some patients wear them full-time). Many people may find that Invisalign is a better fit for their lifestyle than conventional dental braces because you don’t have to deal with metal wires and brackets. Since there’s nothing to change about your treatment or hygiene routines, it’s easy to see why many people choose Invisalign over other types of teeth whitening procedures—especially those who want their treatments done quickly.
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