Posted on: 30 December 2020
When people want whiter teeth, the first thing they typically do is head to the pharmacy for some whitening strips. These strips do work for a lot of people. They can lighten the teeth a few shades and reduce the appearance of mild stains. But what if you're still not happy with the look of your teeth after using whitening strips? Then you need to head to the cosmetic dentist. There are two different treatments they often recommend for patients in your position.
The first thing your dentist is likely to recommend is a professional whitening treatment. This treatment operates under the same basic principles as whitening strips. It uses a bleaching agent — usually peroxide — to lighten your tooth enamel. However, because the solution is being applied by a dentist, a more concentrated bleach solution can be used. The dentist can also shine a special UV light or laser on your teeth, which can activate the bleach solution and give you even better results.
Professional whitening usually takes less than an hour. It's generally safe. However, it can lead to some tooth sensitivity in the days following treatment, and it is not a good choice for anyone with thin or weak tooth enamel.
If your dentist feels you're not a good candidate for professional whitening — perhaps because you have thin enamel or a history of sensitive teeth — then they may instead recommend that you have veneers placed over your teeth. Veneers are thin caps made from porcelain or a composite resin. They only cover the front and sides of your teeth. When someone looks at you, they will only see the veneer, not the stained tooth behind it.
Getting veneers is a bit more involved than getting your teeth professionally whitened. You will need to set up two appointments. At the first appointment, your dentist will create an impression of your teeth. They'll then send this impression to the lab so your veneers can be made. At the second appointment, the veneers can be fixed to your teeth with special cement.
Your dentist will work with you to decide on the right color for your veneers. You can have them made as bright as you want, but most patients prefer a more natural color.
If whitening strips did not work for you, don't give up on achieving a whiter smile. Your local cosmetic dentist can help you get there.Share