Maintaining Professional Teeth Whitening
Teeth whitening is a popular cosmetic procedure performed by dentists. The goal is to whiten the appearance of the teeth to achieve a brighter and healthier looking smile. To whiten teeth, the dentist first polishes them to remove any food residue or plaque. Then a whitening solution is applied to the front surface of the teeth. This solution is often made with a bleaching agent like hydrogen peroxide, but is not harmful to the body. Generally, the solution needs to be cured with a light or laser which activates the whitening compounds. Once finished, the dentist may recommend a follow up to achieve the desired shade.
How Long Does Teeth Whitening Last?
How long teeth whitening lasts varies from person to person. The average length of the whitening effect can be as short as 6 months or as long as 2 years. Various factors can affect how long the teeth are white, including diet, lifestyle, and the properties of the individual’s teeth and mouth.
If you have a tendency to smoke cigarettes or often consume dark liquids like coffee, tea, or red wine, the whitened result may fade quicker. To keep the effect as long as possible, dentists suggest brushing twice a day and cutting down on drinks and foods that could stain.
How Long Does It Take To Whiten Teeth?
In-office professional teeth whitening is a relative quick process. Because dentists have access to higher concentrations of whitening solution, it takes far less time than most at-home whitening kits. Most appointments take between 1 and 2 hours and result in a noticeable change in the color of the teeth.
If the desired color is not achieved in that time frame, the dentist may schedule you to come in for a follow up. Keep in mind that how white the teeth can get varies greatly from person to person. For some, the pearly white results are not as easy to reach. Your dentist can offer advice on how to keep your teeth as stainless as possible without excess whitening treatments.
After Teeth Whitening Care
Once having your teeth professionally whitening, it is important to follow after-care instructions for at least 48 hours after in order to keep them stainless for a longer period of time.
Keep up with brushing
While brushing is important for dental and oral health, it is especially important after a tooth whitening procedure. Aside from brushing twice a day, it is often advised to brush teeth immediately after eating a meal so the food doesn’t have time to stain the freshly whitened teeth.
Keep gum handy
If brushing is not possible, sugar-free gum is a doable alternative. Chewing gum after a meal can help pull any food residue off the teeth and avoid any stains forming. However, chewing gum is not a viable substitute for brushing teeth. This method should only be used in times of need.
Avoid dark drinks
Dark drinks like tea, coffee, beer, or red wine can stain the teeth in general, but especially after a teeth whitening procedure. Within 48 hours the teeth are most prone to blemishes. It is crucial to avoid any potential staining agents at this time. After this window, you can drink these beverages. But keep in mind that the more you cut down on drinks that stain, the white your teeth will stay.
Avoid acidic foods
Acidic foods like pickles, lemons, and soda can be harsh on the enamel of the teeth. After the whitening treatment, the teeth are already weaker than normal. Any excess abrasive or acidic foods will only further the weakness. This is not only bad for the tooth itself but can also cause oral discomfort.
Avoid any foods that are too hot or cold
Because the whitening solution used in professional teeth whitening is rather powerful, sometimes the teeth can be sensitive. In order to avoid any pain or discomfort, avoid eating foods that might be too hot or too cold.
Abundant Dental Teeth Whitening
The Abundant Dental team has over 20 years of experience serving Salt Lake and Utah County. Their dentists continually further their training and education as they work to provide the most specialized and up-to-date service. Our mission is your smile. For healthier, brighter, whiter teeth, among many other cosmetic dentistry procedures, Abundant Dental is here to help. Call us today for your best teeth yet.