An increasing number of people are spending money to get whiter, brighter teeth. But
- Is teeth whitening safe?
- Does tooth whitening work?
Here are the things to know about teeth whitening treatments:
(1) What is teeth whitening procedure?
Tooth whitening is a type of dentistry. It is a cosmetic dental procedure that greatly improves the look of your teeth. Teeth whitening involve making your teeth lighter by bleaching. It helps to remove discoloration and stains. It can’t make your teeth pearly white, but it can brighten the existing color of your teeth by several shades.
(2) Who can perform teeth whitening?
It must be performed only by a dental professional or by another regulated dentist like a dental therapist or dental hygienist, on a dentist prescription.
(3) Can beauticians do teeth whitening?
Some beauty therapists do teeth whitening, but if there is no dentist present, then performing teeth whitening treatments are illegal. Performing teeth whitening by non-dentists can be dangerous to your oral health. You can also buy a good DIY at home tooth whitening kits, but they may also harm.
(4) How does tooth whitening work at the dentist?
If you are going for teeth whitening, then you have to make several visits to a dentist surgery over the next few months.
The dentist will take your teeth impression in order to create a mouth guard. What is a dental impression? A teeth impression is an imprint of your mouth and teeth to create shaped items. The dentist will choose a metal or horseshoe-shaped plastic tray to fit your gums and teeth comfortably. Then a close replica of your oral tissue and teeth is produced.
The dentist will then advise you how to use the mouth guard along with a bleaching agent. With the mouthguard at home, you apply the whitening gel on a daily basis for a particular period of time over 3 to 4 weeks. Some teeth whitening agents can be left overnight. You can leave on your teeth for up to 8 hours at a time. This can shorten your treatment period to 1-week.
Your dentist can also give laser teeth whitening. Known as power whitening, a bleaching agent is painted on your teeth and then a laser light is emitted on the bleaching gel for activating it. This type of teeth whitening takes around an hour.
(5) Can any dentist make your teeth whiter?
Yes, given they have gone through the licensure process in order to practice dentistry. Licensed dental hygienists and dental therapists also can perform teeth whitening treatments on a dentist’s prescription.
(6) Is it safe to get your teeth whitened by using at-home kits? What about beauty salons?
Only visit a registered dentist to carry out teeth bleaching treatments because unqualified people doing teeth whitening, for instance, in beauty salons, is not only illegal but also carry risks and can affect your teeth, harm tooth enamel and cause sensitive teeth.
(7) Does at home teeth whitening kits damage your teeth?
Some at home kits are not effective because they contain low amounts of whitening agents. Normally, if you are doing the teeth whitening procedure, the mouthguard given by a dentist may not properly fit. Therefore, some of the whitening gel can leak out into your mouth and on your gums, leading to sensitivity and blistering and can damage teeth.
(8) Could beauty salon teeth whitening be a dental health risk?
Teeth whitening carried out in beauty salons by beauticians without dental qualifications or any training not only has a risk to your dental health, but it is also illegal.
(9) Where can I get my teeth whitened?
A teeth whitening is regarded as a cosmetic treatment. It can be done only by a dental professional or other dentists privately. Costs vary. Usually, take home treatments can cost about $300 and in-office bleaching can cost about $650. The laser teeth whitening are more expensive. It can cost about $1250.
(10) Is teeth whitening suitable for everyone?
Your dental professional will advise you whether doing teeth whitening is suitable for you or not. For example, if you have crowns or gum disease, then it may not be right for you.
(11) What are the questions I have to ask a dentist before the treatment?
Ask simple questions on different types of teeth whitening system available, what results to expect, and how long does it last. Also, ask them can whitening your teeth damage the gums and increase sensitivity.
Talk to others who have had the similar whitening treatment or consult another dental professional for a second opinion so that you feel confident. Make sure you ask for a written treatment plan and cost estimate before you go ahead.
(12) Can you get your teeth permanently whitened?
No, making your teeth white from yellow is just temporary. It can last for some months for up to 3-years. However, it depends on each person. Normally, if you smoke, drink lots of coffee, tea, or red wine, then they can all discolor your teeth and the whitening effect will not last as long.
(13) Does teeth whitening work on false teeth (dentures)?
No, teeth whitening will not work on fake teeth, fillings, crowns or veneers.
(14) What are the dangers of teeth whitening?
Despite what treatments you carry out, there is a possibility that your teeth and gums can be sensitive to the whitening gels used in the teeth whitening, particularly if your teeth are already sensitive. There is also a possibility of teeth whitening kits causing burns to gums and using some at home kits can harm your tooth enamel.
(15) What can I do if I am not happy with my smile?
If you are worried that teeth whitening by a dentist has harmed you, or if you feel that someone unqualified or unregistered have performed teeth whitening illegally, then contact the Dental Council to file a complaint on the private dental care and they can help you.