One of the most common dental complaints people have is that their teeth are yellowed or discolored. Teeth whitening is a non-invasive treatment that bleaches natural tooth enamel to give you a brighter, whiter smile. It can be performed at the dentist’s office, or at home under your dentist’s guidance.
Medicines, foods, and normal wear can cause unsightly teeth, as can fluorosis, the excessive fluoridation of teeth during their development. If you are contemplating whitening your teeth, remember that the whitening solution only works on natural enamel, and evaluate accordingly for replacing old fillings, crowns, or other fixtures.
How Does Teeth Whitening Work?
To get the beautiful teeth you see in movies and commercials, you’ll need two visits to your dentist. The first is for taking impressions, molds of your teeth, which will be used to make custom-shaped clear plastic trays. At the second, the trays will be adjusted if necessary, and you will be given a special whitening solution to wear them with.
Your dentist will decide on the specific course of treatment, but in general, you’ll wear the trays for a few weeks, either twice a day for half an hour or overnight. It’s likely that your teeth will be sensitive, but this will fade after you finish the course of treatment. Be sure to maintain your regular dental visits to ensure that your smile stays healthy and white long after you stop wearing the trays.