Nobody is happy with yellow or stained teeth. Smoking or consuming foods and drinks can discolour your teeth, which in turn creates a need for teeth whitening. There are many techniques and products available that claim to be able to restore your bright smile, but which one is the best for you? Which ones are easy to apply, and which ones make you feel like you would need training from dental assistant schools to be able to use properly? Here are some of the latest innovations in the field of teeth whitening.
Blue light whitening
Some specialized clinics have started offering blue light whitening, a simple, safe procedure that takes about an hour and can remove years of stains from eating and drinking. A patient must first come in for a complementary consultation where a professional will examine the teeth and gums to ensure that they are suited for laser whitening. Then, during the procedure, a proprietary gel and blue light treatment whitens your teeth to their optimal brightness while the patient relaxes. Though a procedure like this is more expensive than the teeth whitening kits you can buy in a pharmacy, it also guarantees that a professional will examine you and follow your progress during every step of the procedure.
If you have sensitive teeth, or teeth with worn enamel, tray whitening could be just the thing for you. Tray whitening is accomplished by wearing a form-fitting matrix that contains a whitening agent at home for 2 to 4 weeks. It’s based on a hydrogen peroxide solution that releases oxygen. Oxygen works on teeth by breaking down the protein stains in the teeth without harming the tooth itself. Your teeth can stay white for 1 to 5 years, depending on your personal habits, such as drinking tea or smoking.
Over-the-counter products don’t necessarily have the best reputation. Because of the wide range of quality, customers find it hard to know which product they should purchase and which one they should avoid. On the other hand, at-home whitening products don’t require dental assistant training to apply and can provide quick results. The most successful of these types of products that we’ve seen in recent years are whitening gels that come with a pen–brush applicator. Most of these are recommended by dentists and graduates of dental assistant schools and can produce professional level whitening results of up to three shades in just seven days. The product whitens the teeth by discharging active oxygen to remove tooth stains and deeper discolourations of the enamel.
If you dislike gels, another option is white strips. Crest in particular has had a lot of success in recent years with its 3D White Whitestrips line of products. Designed to conform to the shape of the teeth, the stripes are thin, flexible strips that are coated with a tooth whitening gel that contains peroxide. The whitestrips need to be placed on the teeth for 30 minutes once a day, for 20 consecutive days. Most patients start seeing results after the third day and get long-lasting, professional-level whitening after the 20 day period. Of course, for best results it is always advisable to see a professional, and dental assistants are increasingly focusing on client demands for keeping teeth their whitest.