As you age, you may begin to notice that your teeth aren’t quite the same shade of white that they were in your youth. Typically, noticeable discoloration begins in the late 20s and early 30s. A variety of factors can speed up the discoloration process including chemical staining from drinking dark colored liquids and smoking, a genetic predisposition to early yellowing, and the onset of gum and tooth disease. The good news is that most tooth enamel can be easily returned to a sparkling white with professional whitening treatments. If you are self-conscious about the color of your teeth, cosmetic tooth whitening may be a great alternative for you to consider. Dr. Eddie Siman has a variety of tooth whitening systems for you to choose from.
Tray whitening is a popular and very successful method of whitening and brightening your teeth at home. After Dr. Siman makes your custom molded whitening trays, he will help you create an at-home schedule for treatment. Your custom-fitted tray is filled with a highly-concentrated whitening gel, and temporarily adheres to either the bottom or top row of teeth. The tray is worn for several hours over the course of a few weeks, depending on the level of whitening desired, and may be worn at night. The tray ensures maximum contact with the teeth and ensures consistency of results.
In-office whitening systems generally produce the most dramatic results in the shortest amount of time. There are several choices for the in-office teeth whitening treatments, including the increasingly popular laser whitening. Dr. Siman utilizes a highly effective laser whitening treatment, during which a high concentration of lightening agent is applied to your teeth and then heated for several minutes with a laser light.
In-office light-activated teeth whitening treatments use laser light to speed up the whitening process by allowing the agent to be absorbed more quickly into the tooth enamel. Many patients choose laser whitening for the quickness and convenience it offers. In about an hour, your teeth can appear 6 to 10 shades whiter!
Although some patients use over-the-counter treatments as a supplemental whitening enhancer, these treatments are not recommended as alternatives to professional whitening. The concentration of over-the-counter whitening agents may be significantly lower than you need and often will not produce the dramatic results that many patients desire. Also keep in mind, over-the-counter products cannotguarantee length of whitening and will not produce custom results.
Most tooth and gum sensitivity following whitening is temporary and should subside within a few days following treatment. To minimize tooth sensitivity, Dr. Siman may advise you to reduce your whitening treatment time and increase the time between treatments. You may also want to use a sensitivity toothpaste, fluoride rinse and a soft bristle toothbrush. Ibuprofen may also help relieve some of the discomfort if physician approved. If your tooth sensitivity is persistent or painful, contact Dr. Siman for other suggestions.