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Cosmetic Dentistry

What is Professional Teeth Whitening?

Professional Teeth Whitening

Professional teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental treatment that is used to improve the appearance of one's smile by lightening the surface of their discolored or stained teeth. While at-home whitening treatments have become more popular than ever, having your teeth whitened at Palmetto Dental Arts offers superior results, professional-strength whitening products, safety, and guidance from our trained dental team from start to finish. 

Why Would Someone Need to Have Their Teeth Professionally Whitened?

Tooth discoloration is extremely common. Even with the best at-home oral hygiene habits, teeth can still become stained or discolored over time due to a number of lifestyle factors. Some of the most common reasons one's teeth could become dull or discolored are:

  • Age
  • Genetics
  • Certain medications
  • Consuming stain-causing foods and drinks, such as black coffee and red wine
  • Tobacco use

No matter what the cause of your discolored smile may be, in most cases, professional teeth whitening can improve your teeth's whiteness and brightness by:

  • Removing stains caused by dietary choices
  • Reverse the signs of aging
  • Enhance the natural appearance of your teeth

While professional teeth whitening is effective at removing stains and discoloration caused by dietary choices and many lifestyle factors, teeth whitening is not an option for people with tooth discoloration caused by a dental injury or trauma.

Professional Teeth Whitening Process

At Palmetto Dental Arts, we are eager to make your cosmetic dental experience as comfortable and convenient as possible. During your professional teeth whitening procedure, you can expect the following to take place:

  • First, the dentist will protect your gums from the strong whitening agents by applying a special gel to them.
  • Next, the dentist will apply a whitening solution that contains 35% hydrogen peroxide to the surface of your stained teeth.
  • Then, a specialized LED blue light will be used to help the whitening agents lift the stains for the surface of your teeth.

Depending on the color and condition of your teeth, multiple whitening applications may be necessary to achieve your desired results. This will entail the dentist wiping off the whitening gel, then reapplying several coats until the stains are lifted.

After your teeth whitening procedure is complete, it's important to avoid eating or drinking anything for at least 30 minutes. Additionally, a whitening kit may be given to you to continue your whitening process at home, if needed.

How Long Does Professional Teeth Whitening Take?

The length of your teeth whitening procedure will depend on the condition of your teeth and the results you have in mind. It's important to communicate your oral health goals with your dentist prior to undergoing a professional teeth whitening treatment to ensure you are both on the same page and can discuss any potential issues. For most people, teeth whitening at the dentist will take around 30-40 minutes.

How to Care for Your Teeth After Having Them Professionally Whitened

Unfortunately, your professional teeth whitening results won't last forever. To help your smile stay white and bright for as long as possible, it's important to practice excellent oral health habits at home, including:

  • Brush your teeth two times a day
  • Floss and use mouth rinse once a day
  • Limit your consumption of stain-causing foods
  • Visit the dentist every six months for routine dental exams and professional cleanings

Depending on the condition of your teeth and your lifestyle choices, you can expect your whitening results to last up to 2 years.

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