Looking to enhance your smile? Our dentist’s recommendation for teeth whitening is a great place to start. When you whiten your teeth, they naturally look younger and healthier.
Teeth whitening is often the first step when it comes to a smile makeover. That way any updated dental restorations can be matched to your brighter tooth enamel. If you have old fillings or crowns, they will need to be updated to reflect the whiter, brighter color of your teeth.
How do you choose the best dental bleaching system? Not all teeth whitening products or treatments are the same. Here are some things you’ll want to consider:
Commercial vs. Professional Teeth Whitening Products
Walk into any grocery store or pharmacy, and you’ll see a dozen different take-home whitening options. Maybe it’s a pen, brush-on gel, one-size trays, or strips that you peel and stick to your teeth. You can also find plenty of different options on the internet (to the point that it’s overwhelming.)
Although a lot of these products claim to contain the same ingredients as professional whitening, they aren’t the same. Either the concentration is different or the blend has different components than what you’ll find in a professional gel.
Do they work? Yes, to an extent. But the results may only be 2-3 shades or so of improvement, compared to 7-8 if you’re having your teeth professionally whitened. Not only that but commercial products aren’t specifically fitted to your unique teeth. This can mean that the gel doesn’t come into complete contact with every tooth surface, resulting in uneven or patchy results.
When you choose to use a professional system, you get prescription-grade products that you can only purchase directly through a dental practice. You can’t find those products online. The gels are highly concentrated for maximum stain removal. That way you see stronger, faster results without buying additional kits over and over at the drugstore. Plus, professionally fitted trays can last you for years, making them a cost-effective solution for keeping your smile white.
Custom Take-Home Whitening Trays
Do you prefer to whiten your teeth in the comfort of your home? Or to have more control over managing when you whiten, to help reduce potential sensitivity? Maybe you like the idea of being able to touch up your smile whenever you want. If that’s the case, our Princeton dentist‘s recommendation for teeth whitening will be a set of custom, take-home trays.
Custom whitening trays are made from a mold of your mouth (either by taking a scan or impression of your teeth.) They almost look like clear aligners or Invisalign trays. You simply place a small amount of whitening gel into the reservoir of each tooth, then wear the trays as directed. This could be an hour a day or overnight, depending on the gel we recommend.
Your initial whitening treatment will usually be once a day for up to 10-14 days. After that, you can wear your trays a few times after regular checkups to maintain your smile’s brightness.
Professional Same-Day Teeth Whitening
Short on time? No problem. You also have the option of same-day whitening treatments that give you brighter teeth in just one trip to our office. For same-day whitening, a highly concentrated and special blend of gel is applied to your teeth. Sometimes it’s accelerated with a light, to increase the speed of stain oxidation.
Normally a same-day whitening treatment takes anywhere from 60-90 minutes, depending on the current color of your teeth and how well they respond to the treatment.
In-office whitening treatment is perfect for someone with an important, big event and little time to prepare. Such as a job interview, wedding, or special occasion where they want to look their best. But it’s also a nice fit for anyone who doesn’t have a lot of time on their hands, or who thinks it will be challenging to keep up with an at-home system.
What if I Have Sensitive Teeth?
Our Princeton dentist’s recommendation for teeth whitening will vary for people who have sensitive teeth. For example, stronger, more highly-concentrated ingredients tend to result in excess sensitivity. Whereas gentler concentrations or other blends of ingredients tend to result in minimal sensitivity.
If you’re using take-home whitening trays, we recommend wearing them once every other day instead of daily, to reduce initial reactions of sensitivity. Once you achieve the results you’re looking for, you can go back to touch up as needed.
How to Maintain White Teeth
There are several important steps to take if you want to keep your teeth white. Our dentist recommendation for teeth whitening clients include the following instructions:
- Stick to clear liquids whenever possible, or drink dark liquids through a straw
- Rinse your mouth regularly, especially after eating dark foods that might stain a white shirt
- Schedule regular dental cleanings every six months to polish away new surface stains
- Touch up your whitening by applying daily whitening gel for up to a week after each dental cleaning
- Avoid smoking or tobacco products
- Always use your whitening products as directed
- Store whitening gel in the refrigerator when not in use
As long as you maintain your teeth properly, you can keep your teeth white for several years!
Make Sure Your Teeth and Gums are Healthy
Before you start your teeth whitening journey, it’s important to make sure your teeth and gums are healthy. You never want to apply concentrated bleaching gel if you have active cavities or gum disease. Our Princeton dentist will assess your mouth to screen for any active infections beforehand. That way you can whiten your smile with our dentist’s recommendation for teeth whitening, without triggering irritation or hypersensitivity.
Teeth Whitening Treatment in Princeton, NJ
Canal Vista Family Dental offers professional whitening treatments for adults of all ages and backgrounds. Whether you’re hoping to take years off your smile or just want to combat all that coffee stain, our professional products will give you the results you’re looking for.
Call our Princeton cosmetic dentist today to get started.