Dental Tips Blog

Mar
24

How Long Does Teeth Whitening Last?

Posted in Teeth Whitening

Despite the money you may put toward a white smile, teeth whitening is not a permanent beauty treatment. People’s teeth are exposed to hundreds of foods and beverages that cause staining, and because of this some people see their bright smiles begin to fade within one month of having them whitened. The degree of whiteness varies from person to person, as does the degree in which their teeth will fade after whitening. There are certain steps that people can take to help their teeth remain bright and white after a whitening treatment, and when these steps are followed some people have reported that their teeth remain white for up to two years.

Avoiding foods and beverages that cause staining goes a long way in helping the teeth stay white. For many people, this is a battle of the wills. Can they give up their beloved coffee or sodas? Can they limit the amount of staining foods that they love? By doing so, people can make their investment in whiter teeth last longer.

Brushing after every meal enhances the cleanliness of the mouth and eliminates teeth staining bacteria. When bacteria turns into plaque inside the mouth, damaging effects can occur – such as staining. Simply by keeping a tooth brush and tooth paste with you, you can extend the whiteness of your smile.

Stop smoking. If you are a smoker, not only should you stop for your overall health and the health of those around you, you should also stop for the health of your teeth. Smoking can cause severe staining of the tooth enamel, and many dentists agree that whitening the teeth while continuing to smoke is just throwing money away.

So how long does teeth whitening last? Well, that depends on you and your willingness to help extend the length of your investment. By simply avoiding or limiting expose to staining foods and beverages, brushing after meals, and not smoking – your white smile can last for months, if not years, to come. Simple steps can go a long way to make your bright, white smile last.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Lawrence Rosenman, Springfield Lorton Dental Group

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Jan
29

The Science Behind Teeth Whitening

Posted in Teeth Whitening

Are teeth whitening products healthy to use? How do they actually remove stain from your teeth? A lot of dental patients want to know if teeth whitening kits really work, and if they’re safe for them to use on their own teeth.

Most whitening products use peroxide based gel that oxidizes stains on the tooth surface so that they are broken up and released from the tooth. Tooth enamel is porous, so the spongy texture of enamel allows stains to be inside of the tooth as well. Gels applied to the tooth reach into these small tubules so that deeper stain can be released. Over the counter gels contain weaker levels of peroxide, while professional strength gels bought through a dental office are more concentrated (providing more dramatic results.) As the gel is held onto the tooth for 30-60 minutes in a whitening tray, the peroxide continues to oxidize until it cannot any further. Repeating this step several days in a row will eventually lead to noticeably whiter teeth that are easy to maintain for several years.

There are usually only 2 considerations given for when whitening products should not be used: when active cavities are present, or on tooth colored restorations. Whitening teeth that have cavities can cause sensitivity or nerve trauma, and tooth colored fillings and crowns will not change shades as the resin is shaded to match the tooth at the time treatment was completed. Consider whitening your teeth before having restorations replaced, so that the material can be matched to your whiter tooth shade.

Avoiding products like red wine, coffee, tea, and cigarettes can help extend your whitening results, as these can cause significant staining when consumed on a daily basis.

Posted on behalf of Dr. Lawrence Rosenman, Springfield Lorton Dental Group

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Jan
1

Cosmetic Dentistry

Cosmetic dentistry is the area of dentistry that relates to the appearance of your mouth. While not all cosmetic dental procedures are done just for esthetic purposes, most people are hoping to achieve a more pleasing look through cosmetic dentistry.

People are very aware of their smiles. Think of all of the times you have noticed someone who smiles but keeps his/her lips closed so as not to show the teeth. Self consciousness, insecurity, and low self esteem can all be related back to the way a person feels about himself or herself. Cosmetic dentists are aware of how a person’s life can be affected by their smile and is able to offer many different procedures to enhance one’s appearance.

Teeth whitening is the most popular form of cosmetic dentistry, and it is also the least invasive. From over the counter products to short dental visits, people can achieve a whiter smile in very little time. Braces are also a common form of cosmetic dentistry. Braces help to align the teeth and jaw for a straight, ideal smile. There are also forms of veneers, dental bridges, implants, and crowns that can help a person achieve the smile he or she desires. All procedures come with their own pros and cons, so it is always helpful to talk with your dentist about the outcomes you hope to achieve and what you are willing to do to get those outcomes.

There are also many people who undergo cosmetic dental procedures to help improve the function of their mouth. Severely crooked teeth, large gaps in the teeth, missing teeth, exposed gums – all of these can lead to health concerns for people as bacteria and infection tend to grow in mouths with exposed spaces and misaligned teeth.

If you are self-conscious about your smile, talk to your dentist to see what options are available to you. A new smile can be just around the corner!

Posted on behalf of Dr. Lawrence Rosenman, Springfield Lorton Dental Group

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