Teeth whitening is a way to restore the color of the tooth enamel as close to its natural shade of white as possible. This is done by removing stains and debris from the surface of the teeth. Years of dark-colored beverages and simple exposure can darken or yellow the shade of your teeth and whitening can take care of those stains. It can be done either in the dentist office, through dental grade take home trays or using store bought at home kits. Is whitening the same thing as bleaching? The term bleaching is used when one wants teeth to whiten beyond the natural color of the teeth so they are not considered the same thing.
Dentist offices utilize bleaching gel to whiten a patient’s teeth in the office. The bleaching gel produces the fastest results and is the safest way to bleach teeth. The advantage of being in the office when getting your teeth whitened is the ability to be closely monitored by the office staff. Sensitivity and irritation to gums and teeth can be carefully watched and controlled quickly. Professional grade trays can be made and taken home to administer, however, the sacrifice is being out from under the watchful eye of the dentist.
There are some things to consider before getting your teeth whitened. The condition of your teeth and your ability to maintain the results will affect how they look. Additionally, you need to be realistic about the results. Age can play a factor in your end result shade. A meeting with your dentist can help you decide which route to take when choosing your optimal teeth whitening method.
Is Teeth Whitening Safe?
Because teeth whitening has been around for a while, the safety of the products is all but guaranteed by the profession. Monitored by the American Dental Association (ADA), products have been fine-tuned to cause as little irritation or side effects as possible.
While there are a few areas that are prone to sensitivity, such as the gums, these side effects are less likely and can be addressed quickly in the office. The professionals in the field of dentistry have monitored the evolution of teeth whitening and worked to create products with very little pain and discomfort.
While performing teeth whitening at home is safe and also effective, you are doing so at your own risk and should come up with a plan in the event of an adverse reaction. Gums and teeth are sensitive, and care should be taken not to expose them to too much of the bleaching agent.
How Much Does Teeth Whitening Cost?
The cost of teeth whitening varies based on the product. Purchasing a whitening kit in the store to administer at home, typically costs less than $100. Conversely, a set of whitening trays from the dentist often costs up to $400. However, these would be administered at home. The costliest option is in-office teeth whitening. These 20-minute sessions could set you back $650 per visit, with several visits in a series. It’s important to weigh all of your options before choosing which one is right for you.
Teeth whitening is a safe and effective way to restore some of the natural white to your teeth by removing built-up stains. In several visits or applications, you can see visible results in the overall shade of your teeth. If you are interested in learning more about teeth whitening, discuss your options with your dentist.