Teeth whitening (external tooth bleaching) is a simple and non-invasive way to change the colour of your natural teeth, while enhancing the beauty of your smile. Having whiter teeth has become the number one aesthetic concern of most dental patients. A popular option uses a professional home whitening system that brightens teeth dramatically for most people. It is important for your dentist to evaluate the cause of your tooth discoloration to ensure that external whitening will work for you!
Since teeth whitening only works on natural tooth enamel, it is important for your dentist to evaluate any older white fillings, crowns, etc. to match the newly bleached teeth. It is also important to identify any areas of decay or exposed tooth dentin and have them treated prior to whitening, to minimize sensitivity problems. Also, to concentrate whitening efforts on the enamel itself, a professional cleaning should be done to remove plaque and tartar that may be coating the teeth. Often, a proper cleaning and polishing will lighten the teeth slightly on their own.
In preparation for your custom whitening system, a member of our dental team will take impressions of your teeth in order to duplicate your teeth in a stone model. From this model, a custom bleaching tray can be made. At your next visit, your whitening system will be given to you along with instructions for home use. It typically takes two weeks to achieve the whitest and brightest smile for your teeth.
Patients should wait 2 weeks after whitening before completing any cosmetic work to allow for your tooth shade to “settle”. This will allow the dentist to achieve the best overall aesthetic outcome.
We also offer our patients, in-office, one-appointment, whitening sessions. This is a great option for patients who are pressed for time i.e. for an upcoming wedding, anniversary or vacation. The results that are achieved from in-office whitening sessions are comparable to take home whitening. Even after the single session is completed, whitening may still occur over the next few days.
It should be noted that teeth whitening is not permanent. A touch-up may be needed every several years, and more often for those who regularly enjoy coffee, tea, or red wine. Smoking also stains teeth dramatically and should be ceased during treatment, and after, to achieve the best whitening (and health) results.