Teeth Whitening Facts

Did you know that according to the American Dental Association, a person’s smile outranked their eyes, hair and their body as the most important physical feature? Having a beautiful smile may just help you on that upcoming job interview. Why? Based on a survey from the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentists, almost 75% of people responding said they believed an unattractive smile could hurt a person’s chances for career success.

So what can you do? Just like everything else, you have a wide array of treatment options. You should discuss with your dentist to see which option or combination of options work best for you.

Teeth Whitening/Bleaching

Why do you even need teeth whitening?

Teeth discolor due to age, genetics and habits, like smoking, soda/wine drinking, coffee/tea drinking, eating certain foods like berries and soy sauce. You have several types of teeth whitening options. My only recommendation is to have your dentist perform any type of whitening procedures. There are several companies that are popping up, and doing teeth whitening while you shop or wait. I don’t recommend these types of services because even though than are probably using FDA approved materials, they are not dentists. Teeth whitening can produce tooth sensitivity, some irritation of the gums, and by not having a dentist perform the service; you can be stuck with a very uncomfortable situation with no one to assist you. By having a dentist perform the service, he or she is responsible for your success and comfort.

Are there any prerequisites to having teeth whitening?

Yes. You should be cavity free and free of any type of gum disease. I routinely get the question why is it important to be cavity free before whitening teeth? Also keep in mind that tooth whitening and tooth bleaching in this case are interchangeable. I have to answer that question with yet another question. My question is “Have you ever known someone who bleached their hair with a cut on their scalp?” If you answered yes, then “Was it comfortable”? That answer is NO! This concept should be followed while attempting to whiten teeth. If you attempt to whiten your teeth without being cavity free and gum disease free, the whitening material may cause teeth sensitivity, and or gum irritation.

What’s the cost of teeth whitening?

The cost varies. You can get a professional strength, available at your dentist only, whitening service for under $100. This by far is the most cost effective method. It’s a very comfortable tray for your top and bottom teeth. These trays you wear for about an hour for 5-10 days. If you want your teeth whiter, simply purchase another kit, or click here to get a free kit.

The next option is a little more detailed. With this option, you need to have impressions taken at your dentist to make custom trays. The custom trays allow the whitening material to be more concentrated directly on the teeth. It’s more comfortable, and you wear it for less time. This option you wear for about 30 minutes. This option is available for less than $300, but if you need additional whitening material, simply purchase at your dentist for about $40.00. This option has a larger upfront cost, but over time is the best option, and this is the one I personally use.

The third option is in-office power whitening. This option gives the most immediate results. This option is for fast results. “I have a meeting tomorrow” or “I have a class reunion this weekend”. This option can be performed in your dentist office in a little more than an hour, and cost less than $500.00.

As a final message, please do not attempt any teeth whitening procedures without first consulting your dentist! If you have any other dental related questions, please feel free to “Ask Dr. Pierson!”

Author Pierson Dental

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