In Office vs. At-Home Teeth Whitening
Despite our best efforts to care for our teeth, we cannot prevent tooth discoloration. The bright white tooth color that we desire can be difficult to obtain through brushing alone. General wear and tear, tooth erosion, and even the foods and drinks we consume can cause our teeth to stain or discolor. Fortunately, there are many teeth whitening products available to help brighten our teeth. While there are many treatments that can be done at home, at Dr. James M. Stein’s Boston cosmetic dentistry practice, he offers professional teeth whitening for his patients.
At-Home Whitening Options
Many patients choose to use over-the-counter whitening treatments because they can be done on your own time in the comfort of your own home. These treatments can also be significantly less expensive than professional treatments. While these products do offer a level of convenience, you should have realistic expectations of the results. Over-the-counter teeth whitening will not produce the drastic results that you can expect from a professional treatment.
- Whitening toothpaste: Whitening toothpaste is primarily good for treating superficial stains on the surface of the tooth.
- Whitening rinses: Whitening rinses contain ingredients such as hydrogen peroxide to help whiten teeth. These rinses are used twice a day before brushing. Results from rinses are minimal and may not be noticed for up to 12 weeks.
- Whitening gel: Whitening gel requires several applications over a two week time period. The results achieved with whitening gel are not permanent; they typically last up to four weeks.
- Whitening strips: Whitening strips are very similar to gel. They adhere to the teeth to coat them in whitening gel. They also produce results that are visible for up to four weeks.
- Whitening trays: Tray systems can be bought over the counter or from our Boston dental office. These trays are filled with a whitening solution. You wear these trays over your teeth for a set amount of time. While over-the-counter trays may not fit comfortably, Dr. Stein can customize trays to fit your mouth exactly. This is the best option to consider if you prefer an at-home treatment.
In Office Teeth Whitening Options
Dr. Stein offers professional, in-office teeth whitening at his Boston dental practice. Treatment begins with the application of a hydrogen peroxide-based gel. A light is placed over the teeth to activate the properties of the bleaching properties in the gel. In under an hour we can give our patients results that are significantly greater than those they obtain from weeks or months of using store-bought whitening treatments.
Alternatives to Teeth Whitening
For teeth that are severely stained or those that are also suffering from additional cosmetic flaws, you may want to consider alternate treatments. For our patients in Boston, porcelain veneers can be adhered to the surface of the teeth to improve the color, shape and overall appearance of teeth.
Schedule an Appointment
Dr. James M. Stein offers many procedures to improve the health and appearance of your smile. To learn how we can improve your smile, schedule an appointment with Dr. Stein.