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Teeth Whitening

Professional Teeth Whitening vs Over-the-Counter

Today, many adults and even teenagers in NYC are faced with mounting pressure to reach a “beauty standard”. Many people are turning to over the counter teeth whitening products as the quickest and least inexpensive method to brighten the color of their teeth.

There are numerous whitening options available at drugstores and even department stores in New York City. These products are usually safe to use and can work if used correctly (and consistently), but few people ask which teeth whitening method is best for them and whether they should be undergoing this treatment at all. 

Past dental work, or damage to your enamel can cause teeth whitening products to have unexpected results.  The best first step is to talk to a dental professional about what products are effective and affordable.

With professional teeth whitening in New York, your cosmetic dentist will first assess your teeth to determine whether you’re a candidate for teeth whitening. They will then determine what type of teeth whitening you need based on the type of stains on your teeth. This process is safer than using over the counter products because you are under the supervision of a professional who will monitor results and any possible side effects.

Professional teeth whitening also has a higher concentration of the bleaching compound, which means you’ll have faster and more noticeable results.

Types of Tooth Stains

There are 2 types of stains that can make your teeth look dull or discolored. Depending on what type of stains you have, your dentist will recommend a different type of treatment. The 2 types of stains are:

  • Extrinsic Stains (above the enamel)
  • Intrinsic Stains (below the enamel)

Extrinsic Stains

Extrinsic stains are above the enamel and are caused by daily habits such as frequent consumption of dark-colored beverages and foods, tobacco use, inadequate brushing, and infrequent dental cleanings. These stains can be prevented by maintaining a daily oral hygiene routine as well as regular dental checkups and teeth cleanings. If you smoke or drink coffee or soda daily, you’ll likely need some form of teeth whitening treatment to aid in stain removal.

Intrinsic Stains

Intrinsic Stains are below the enamel and are usually the result of aging or other external factors. These stains are not likely to respond well to topical bleaching, which means someone with intrinsic stains would likely be a candidate for in-office teeth whitening. There is also the possibility that this type of stain won’t respond well to either teeth whitening treatments. If that’s the case, other treatment options should be discussed with a cosmetic dentist in NYC.

Teeth Whitening Methods

Teeth Whitening FAQ's

Safety of Teeth Whitening

Since teeth whitening took the world by storm, national and international dental health organizations have been working hard to make the available options safe – with a few exceptions:

The hydrogen peroxide content in whitening solutions may cause heightened tooth and gum sensitivity in some individuals, such as those with natural sensitivity issues or very unhealthy teeth. Adolescents under the age of 14 should not be whitening at all, as it can affect their developing tooth structure.

For these reasons, over-the-counter toothpaste, trays, and strips are not safe or appropriate for everyone and should be avoided as a general rule.

How many office appointments will it take to get the whitening process going?

The whitening process will take two appointments in our midtown NYC dental office.

The first appointment will take 30 minutes to make the molds (impressions) of
your teeth. After you leave, we will create the models of your teeth and fabricate
custom flexible trays.

A few days later you will need to come in for just 15 minutes to get the 2 custom
trays and 8 whitening syringes containing the whitening material.
Custom trays of your upper and lower teeth Whitening material

How long should I wear the trays filled with the whitening material?

You should wear the trays 30 minutes each day for 14 days or until you get the
results you want and then for an additional three days.

The three extra days are to compensate for the slight relapse that will occur after
completing the whitening process.

What can I expect during the whitening process?

Tooth sensitivity may occur during the bleaching process. If this becomes unbearable, you may skip one or 2 days of application. This sensitivity is temporary.

If you use a lot of material some of it may seep out and create a white spot on your gum. Do not get alarmed; this will disappear in a few days. You only need to use a small amount of whitening material. Adding more material will not whiten teeth any faster.

The longer you were the wear the trays, the whiter your teeth will become.

How do I apply the whitening material and how much do I use?

Squeeze a small drop of whitening material from the syringe into the front aspect of the custom trays that have been created for you. You will then place the trays over your teeth.

Only .25 or 1 quarter of 1 syringe is needed per arch. In other words, 1 syringe should last at least 2 days of applications.

Tips When Whitening Teeth

Although dentist-supervised whitening is the safest and most effective solution, there are many things that you can do to maintain whiter, stronger teeth for the long term:

• Brush and floss your teeth at least twice a day to remove naturally staining bacteria.
• Eat foods with natural abrasives (i.e., stain removers), such as apples, carrots, and celery.
• Eat dairy and other foods high in calcium.
• Minimize or avoid activities that stain teeth, such as drinking red wine and smoking cigarettes.
• Discontinue whitening immediately if increased sensitivity occurs.
• Do not whiten teeth if pregnant or nursing.
• Do not repeat whitening sessions more than twice per year.

Will bleaching damage my teeth?

The periodic use of teeth whitening products with a low concentration of hydrogen peroxide does not damage teeth. The nerves in the tooth can get irritated by hydrogen peroxide as it penetrates the tooth, however, this effect is short lived and does not cause damage to the tooth.

We take confidence in a study done on teeth whitening that concluded when the manufacturer’s instructions are followed, hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide-based tooth whitening is safe and effective.

How does the teeth whitening process work?

Hydrogen peroxide is the main active chemical in the teeth whitening process. It penetrates the enamel of the tooth and releases oxygen molecules in a process called oxidation. The oxygen is able to break the bonds of the molecules causing the discoloration so that they can be released from your teeth, leaving only the original white enamel behind.

How long does the whitening last?

Teeth whitening results can last for many years. However, the length of time that the achieved whiteness remains depends on a variety of factors including a patient’s lifestyle and oral hygiene habits. The effect is obviously less likely to last as long if one smokes, or eats or drinks products that stain teeth like coffee or red wine.

Since the mouth guard trays are already fitted to your teeth, some patients opt to occasionally undergo a periodic treatment to help maintain the brightness.

What will whitening do to my existing dental work? Are there side effects?

It’s important to get your teeth professionally cleaned, have all your cavities filled, and make sure your gums are healthy before using teeth whitening products. The dentist will perform an oral exam to make sure that you are a good candidate for this process. At the same time, any issues regarding your existing dental work will be discussed.

To find out more about teeth whitening safety and the best option for your individual needs, always speak to your dentist first. Ziad Jalbout from Making You Smile is one such dentist, proudly offering teeth whitening to New York City residents. Contact Us to book your appointment!

How much does teeth whitening cost?

Our office in NYC charges $550 for our teeth whitening service.  This includes an in-office whitening session for (1.5 hours long), a one week home whitening kit, and take-home custom trays to keep your teeth sparkling.

Find answers to the following questions in the Whitening – Home Whitening Q&A brochure:

1. Is it safe to bleach my teeth?

2. Will bleaching damage my teeth?

3. How does the whitening process work?

4. How long does the whitening last?

5. What will whitening do to my existing dental work?

6. Are there side effects?

View Brochure

Book Your Teeth Whitening Appointment Today

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