There is no doubt that our culture places a lot of emphasis on the goodness of bright white teeth. It is important to note, however, that the whiteness of a person's teeth is not necessarily an effective measure of his or her oral health. In fact, too much teeth whitening has been correlated with the breakdown of tooth enamel and increased gum sensitivity over time, so it is important that teeth whitening is approached in a balanced way. One main reason people elect to utilize the treatments available at our office vs. over-the-counter treatments is that our treatments tend to be faster and require fewer applications. In addition, because our treatments are more controlled than over-the-counter treatments, they are especially good for people who already have sensitive teeth or gums.
There are two ways you can whiten your teeth under our supervision, one is to do an in-office whitening procedure and the other is for us to fabricate custom-fitting trays that you can use at home. The in-office whitening procedure is a one-time appointment that takes about an hour to complete. The trays option will first require a quick appointment to take highly accurate impressions of your teeth, followed by a visit a few days later during which you will be able to pick up your trays and professional-grade bleaching syringes.
What does whitening do?
Changes the color of tooth enamel
Removes stains and discoloration from teeth
Helps to make a great first impression
What can I expect?
At the start of your in-office whitening session, your hygienist will polish your teeth with a paste to remove any stains or debris that she can prior to starting. We will document the color of your teeth before we begin so that we will have a point of comparison afterwards. As a way of protecting your sensitive gum tissue, your hygienist will spread a gel onto your gums to create a barrier between them and your teeth. Once the gel completely covers all of your adjacent tissue, a curing light will be used to set it, creating a tight seal around each of your teeth that will prevent any of the bleaching agent from seeping in and causing gum irritation.
At this point, your hygienist will begin to apply the bleaching agent by painting it onto the visible surfaces of each tooth. A ultra-violet light will be used to speed up the whitening properties of the agent. This process is repeated three times, which is why the procedure takes over an hour to complete. It is completely normal to feel sensitivity during your whitening appointment as well as afterwards. This will go away after a few days. While you will certainly be able to see immediate results from your in-office session, you will likely be surprised by how much your teeth will continue to brighten over the next few days as well.