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What are my options for teeth whitening?

Posted in Cosmetic Services

If you want a whiter, brighter smile, you might be wondering what is the best teeth whitening option for you. Our Winnipeg dentists are here to clarify some of the options so you can make the right decision.

What is teeth whitening?

Teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental procedure designed to lighten the colour of your teeth using peroxide-based bleaching agents. As the active ingredient breaks down, oxygen acts on the tooth enamel, creating the whitening effect.

What are my options for teeth whitening?

With advancements in dental knowledge, you now have some options when it comes to teeth whitening. With more options, it can be difficult to choose the right one, and each has its advantages and can offer positive results. As with any other procedure, there are also some disadvantages to each. 

In-Office Teeth Whitening

The most effective teeth whitening procedures are performed by your dentist in a dental office. This is because the whitening agents in your dentist’s gel are much stronger and produce much more effective results than over-the-counter products.

The procedure usually takes about an hour. Your dentist will use a concentrated whitening solution to remove surface stains from your teeth and lighten their natural colour. This yields somewhat more efficient results than at-home whitening solutions, which take days or weeks to work.

At-Home Professional Teeth Whitening Trays

This take-home option would be supervised by your dentist. During an initial visit to your dentist, a dental impression will be created to make your whitening trays.

You’ll take the whitening trays home and manage the teeth whitening application yourself. You’ll wear the whitening gel for between 30 minutes to a few hours a day, for 1 to 3 weeks depending on what your dentist prescribes.

The whitening solution will gradually remove surface stains from your teeth and lighten their natural colour.

Toothpastes

Whitening toothpaste works to remove surface stains and slightly whiten your teeth. However, keep in mind that whitening toothpastes will not affect the natural colour of your teeth, and they will be unable to lighten stains that have invaded below the tooth’s surface.

Toothpastes specially designed to strengthen enamel can help to defend your teeth from cavities and protect your enamel from further damage, which can prevent stains from developing in the first place.

Whitening Strips

These small plastic strips are coated with peroxide-based gel. When you apply the strip to your teeth, the peroxide coating removes surface stains, lightening the colour of your teeth.

You would typically apply whitening strips daily for a 2- to 3-week period, and keep them on for no more than 30 minutes at a time. Because these products contain only a small amount of peroxide, you will usually see only subtle results.

Porcelain Veneers

Porcelain veneers are wafer-thin strips of porcelain that are affixed to the fronts of your teeth to improve their colour, shape and symmetry.

If only one or a few of your teeth are discoloured, porcelain veneers may be a practical solution to even out the colour of your teeth.

How do I know which are the best teeth whitening products?

The best teeth whitening products for you will depend on a number of factors, from personal preference to the time you have available in your schedule, and your budget. You may want to consider looking up teeth whitening reviews online for tips and ideas from other people who have opted to take the professional and/or at-home route.

If you are considering one of these whitening procedures, contact our Winnipeg dentists today to ensure you are choosing the right option for your smile.

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