Teeth whitening treatments have become extremely popular in recent years. They offer a way to return a smile to its former glory when teeth have become stained or discoloured due to eating, drinking or smoking. There are two options available when you are considering teeth whitening: dental treatments or over the counter teeth whitening products purchased from a chemist or supermarket. Dental treatments are a lot less effort on the behalf of the patient and offer a quicker teeth whitening solution. The main differentiating factor is the price – OTC teeth whitening kits cost between $40 and $100 on average, while an in-office treatment will generally cost around the $650 mark.
How Does Teeth Whitening Work?
In office teeth whitening is a fairly simply procedure, however it does require some finesse to avoid injury to soft tissues in and around the gums. Specialist equipment is needed to perform a teeth whitening procedure to completion. Overall, the whitening process takes between an hour and an hour and a half to complete.
A dentist will make a record of the current shade of the patient’s teeth. They will then polish the patient’s teeth to remove any plaque on the surface. Teeth will be dried with gauze, and retractors may be used to keep the patient’s cheeks, lips and tongue well away from the whitening agent. A barrier is also placed along the gum tissue to protect them from exposure to the bleaching agent.
Following the preparation stage, the teeth are coated in a whitening gel made from either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. They are coated on the front surface only. Many treatments then require use of a laser to activate the peroxide. The solution is left on the teeth for sixty to ninety minutes while the laser does its job. Then, the teeth are rinsed with a fluoride solution to reduce any tooth sensitivity.
Additional visits to the dentist may be scheduled and will follow the same procedure. Additional visits will be necessary until the teeth have attained the desired shade of white. Following both primary and additional cosmetic teeth whitening treatments, it’s recommended that patients avoid foods and beverages that contain a high level of pigmentation, such as grapes or red wine. Consuming such food or beverages may stain the teeth which is counterproductive to the treatment!
Teeth Whitening Side Effects
The only side effect of teeth whitening is an increased level of sensitivity on the tooth surface following treatment. This is short-term only and tends to fade after a day or two. Earlier research has shown that whitening products might also roughen or soften the tooth’s surface, however such studies were completed in a lab, not on living teeth. These side effects may also disappear following cessation of the teeth whitening treatment.
Contact Sydney Park Dental For A Dazzling Smile
If you’re looking to enhance your smile and whiten your teeth to a perfect shade, contact our reception at Sydney Park Dental today. We offer tooth whitening treatments to patients all across Sydney and will help you achieve a perfect white smile today. If you have any questions about teeth whitening treatments, call us on (02) 8084 7170 and we’ll be happy to assist you. We’re open for all dental care appointments Monday to Saturday, 9:00am to 5:00pm, and are open until 7:00pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays.