Professional Teeth Whitening in our Albuquerque Dental Office
Have you looked in the mirror lately and wondered why your teeth are so dingy? Most people don’t realize that everyday activities could discolor their teeth over time. Even if you frequently floss and brush, visit your dentist, and do things right, your teeth can get stained.
Albuquerque residents don’t have to hide their beautiful smiles anymore! Teeth whitening is available from Ivory Dental. We understand that you have various at-home treatments to pick from. However, nothing is as good as an in-office teeth whitening session because it’s professional and strong enough.
In fact, it’s one of the top cosmetic treatments for a reason!
At-home systems usually use lower doses of bleach, so they don’t work very well. Our treatments are stronger and monitored closely. This means that they are controlled, pain-free, and safe to use. Most people notice the results immediately, so you can leave our office with a white smile.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Teeth Whitening
Before we get too far into the discussion about teeth whitening, you should understand that there are benefits and drawbacks of this treatment. Let’s take a look at the advantages of tooth whitening first:
• Fast results
• Safe and effective
• Can better control gum and tooth sensitivity now – in the past, there were issues, but now we use a thick peroxide gel. That way, your teeth don’t soak up as much of the product. Plus, we use fluoride or potassium nitrate as a desensitizer for your comfort.
There are so many advantages of using an in-office whitening treatment. However, to be fair, we do need to discuss the disadvantages so that you have all the information and can make an informed decision:
• Not permanent
• Unpredictable results for some people
• More expensive than the at-home treatments
What Stains Can’t We Remove with a Tooth Whitening Procedure?
We always feel it’s better to get it out of the way first, so we talk about the stains we can’t remove with our tooth whitening procedure. Certain stains just don’t respond well to our in-office treatment. In fact, inorganic stains might even appear darker once the surrounding teeth have been whitened!
Trauma might cause the tooth’s dentin to darken, even after a whitening treatment. In the past children were often prescribed tetracycline antibiotics. Because their teeth were still forming, the chemicals in the drugs bonded with the dentin and tooth enamel underneath. This is permanent; adults with this issue may have gray teeth as a result.
You might even find that using too much fluoride might make it harder to whiten your teeth. In fact, it could be the cause of discoloration.
If you’ve got these issues, we don’t recommend teeth whitening procedures. Instead, you may want to hide the discolored teeth with crowns or veneers, which are permanent solutions.
What Stains Can We Remove with a Tooth Whitening Procedure?
In most cases, an in-office tooth whitening procedure can remove any organic stains from food. It can also treat discoloration that’s caused by:
• Drinking dark beverages (coffee, red wine, tea, or soda)
• Eating different foods, such as dark-colored vegetables and fruits
• Using tobacco
• Aging; with time, your teeth might take on a yellow, brown, gray, or green cast from eating habits or hereditary needs. Yellow teeth are typically the easiest to whiten.
If you’re not sure, you can always schedule a consultation at our office. We can help you determine if our in-office whitening treatment can help.
Who Isn’t a Good Candidate for Tooth Whitening?
Though most people can have a tooth whitening procedure done, we do not feel that these people are suitable candidates for a tooth whitening treatment:
• Gum and tooth hypersensitivity – To avoid a hypersensitive reaction, we recommend that you use at-home bleaching trays, which you can find in our office. They don’t use hydrogen peroxide, so they are less likely to cause sensitivity in your teeth. Instead, these trays offer carbamide peroxide in a lower concentration.
• Deep and intractable staining – Some stains are resistant to the higher concentration of bleach we use at the office. In these cases, we might recommend intensive take-home kits, and we supervise your use of them for your safety. If those don’t work, you might require bonding, crowns, or veneers, all of which are excellent alternatives.
• Transparent teeth – As you age, your teeth might look transparent or translucent. The front teeth are often the first to appear like that because they’re thinner. In-office and at-home treatments might not be ideal for you.
Preparing Your Teeth for the Procedure
The process of whitening your teeth is quite easy to do. However, we do our very best to ensure that you are comfortable for the procedure. In fact, many people fall asleep or get to a relaxed state so that they can rest and enjoy a little pampering or personal time.
Before we can start whitening your teeth, we often do a quick cleaning just to remove any plaque or debris. That way, the bleach gets applied more evenly.
We also do a dental exam while we’re cleaning your teeth. That way, we can find any potential problems, such as gum disease, tooth decay, or cracks. Sometimes, the bleach we use is irritating on the teeth or gums, especially if you have one of the conditions mentioned earlier. If you do, we often delay treatment so that we can correct those problems first.
Next, we take pictures of your teeth before the procedure. That way, we can easily measure the color you want to the one you have. This is a way to mark your progress, and we can give you copies if you prefer!
The In-office Procedure
Typically, the in-office procedure is a standard routine for us. Here are the steps, and you can listen to music or watch a movie while we do our work:
1. We insert a cheek retractor to expose the teeth that are visible when smiling.
2. Then, we paint a hardening resin onto the gums to protect them.
3. From there, we apply the bleaching gel onto the teeth and leave it for about 30 minutes.
4. We suction it off and wash the teeth to see how well the whitening process has gone.
5. If it isn’t the shade you want, we can apply more gel and leave it for 30 minutes.
6. Sometimes, you can choose a whitening treatment requiring special light; we use it now.
7. After the final application of gel, we remove those cheek retractors. You rinse your mouth, and we check the shade.
Let Ivory Dental Whiten Your Smile
Everyone wants to have a beautiful and white smile. If you live in Albuquerque, it’s time to consider a trip to Ivory Dental. We can help you choose the right treatment options to provide the results you want.
Generally, tooth whitening is easy, quick, and painless. However, it’s not for everyone. If you’re unsure you’re a candidate for teeth whitening, please request an appointment. During the consultation, we talk to you about your options and help you decide on the right course of action. You can have a beautiful and whiter smile soon!