If there is one thing that is on our patients’ minds this time of year, it’s how to brighten their smiles. Yes, we get a lot of questions about teeth whitening in Hutchinson around the holiday season — like what are my options in bleaching? Is over-the-counter whitening ok? And above all is this: how long does teeth whitening last? Check out our video on the subject of teeth whitening longevity and then read our FAQ to learn more about the treatment from your dentist at Grant D. Ringler, DDS.
Q: What Are My Options in Teeth Whitening?
A: While there are a number of solutions available for brightening your smile, they can all be grouped into two types: professional or over-the-counter teeth whitening.
White strips, mouthwashes, toothpastes, and other over-the-counter bleaching solutions are available to everyone at the pharmacy or grocery store and are not customized to the specific measurements of your teeth and gums. A professional teeth whitening treatment is custom-fitted and only available through your dentist’s office.
Q: Is Professional Teeth Whitening Worth It?
A: For the best, safest results, it is a good idea to trust your teeth whitening treatment to your dentist. Professional-strength whitening gel is far stronger than what you can pick up on your way home from work, providing you with the very best results from the get-go. With a custom fit, professional bleaching trays also prevent saliva from mixing in with the bleaching gel and taking away from its effectiveness.
Q: What About Tooth Sensitivity and Teeth Whitening?
A: Teeth whitening is completely safe, but the treatment is often associated with slight sensitivity. To prevent discomfort, it is a good idea to brush your teeth with an anti-sensitivity toothpaste in the weeks leading up to and during whitening.
You should note that professional-grade systems can actually reduce sensitivity by revealing excellent results after just one treatment. Over-the-counter white strips are often overused or abused, as people use them beyond the recommended time frame in an effort to maximize whitening. Overuse of the bleaching solution weakens tooth enamel and increases sensitivity.
Q: How Long Does Teeth Whitening Last?
A: No matter whether you chose professional teeth whitening or an over-the-counter solution, the lifespan of your teeth whitening will vary depending on your habits after the treatment is complete. Some people enjoy their results for many years after the initial whitening. But if you drink coffee or dark soda, smoke, or do not maintain proper dental hygiene, you will notice your results beginning to fade sooner than you would like. It is best to avoid the foods and habits that stain your teeth to maintain your white, healthy smile following teeth whitening.
Schedule an Appointment Today!
You can ring in the new year with a dazzling smile! Dr. Ringler, Dr. Melissa Barnhart, and Dr. Justin Barnhart offer custom-fitted professional take-home teeth whitening for adults and older teens. Request an appointment with your Hutchinson dentist for whiter, brighter teeth today!