You've seen celebrities and friends benefit from teeth whitening – but how does the procedure work? Our dentists at Ottawa shed light on the teeth whitening process and how it brightens your smile.
What is teeth whitening?
As we age, our teeth naturally darken. This gradual colour change may be caused by lifestyle factors such as drinking dark beverages such as tea, coffee, or alcohol, taking certain medications, smoking, or general wear and tear from years of use.
Professional teeth whitening treatments employ peroxide-based bleaching agents to lighten your tooth's colour and diminish the appearance of surface stains. As the peroxide degrades, oxygen reacts with the tooth enamel, causing the whitening effect.
Professional Teeth Whitening at Our Office
Professional teeth whitening in the dental office is a popular treatment for many patients, as we can usually complete the full process in one or two sessions.
During your in-office whitening treatment, the dentist will start by placing a rubber shield over your gums to protect them from the whitening solution.
They will then use a small brush-like applicator to apply the bleaching solution to your teeth. For 15 minutes, the solution will be allowed to work on your teeth under a low-heat lamp. After clearing the solution, your hygienist will repeat the application process.
This procedure typically takes between one and two hours. While one session may be sufficient for some patients, depending on your specific case, you may require additional treatments to achieve the desired whitening effect.
Professional Teeth Whitening At Home
If you Google "how to whiten teeth," you'll quickly discover a plethora of at-home teeth whitening options. While these are an option, they often fall short of the strength and effectiveness of the teeth whitening kits available at our Ottawa dental office.
Our teeth whitening solutions include custom whitening trays and detailed instructions on how to whiten your teeth at home. Additionally, you'll have your dentist supervise the procedure, and the cost of teeth whitening may be slightly less than the in-office solution.
To begin, you'll need to visit your dentist to have an impression taken of your teeth so that custom whitening trays can be created to fit your smile. At home, you'll use these trays to apply the whitening solution.
After the trays are prepared, you will return to the dentist's office to ensure they fit properly. Following that, your dentist will send you home with the trays, the whitening solution, and detailed instructions.
At home, you'll wear the trays for approximately 30 minutes daily for about two weeks, or until the desired level of whiteness is achieved. Then, every six months or so, you can touch up your smile with the whitening solution.