Many of our patients have observed that their teeth begin to darken over time. The most common reason for this change is an alteration in their teeth's mineral structure, in which the enamel becomes more porous as we age. In addition, agents like bacterial pigment, certain foods, and certain medications can also contribute to the staining of your teeth, reducing the brightness of the enamel, and causing the tooth to darken. By choosing to have their darkened teeth whitened, patients benefit from a brighter smile.
Whether using strips or pens to whiten your teeth, or opting for gel or laser bleaching there are many ways to counter the darkening effects of age and what you eat and drink over time. You can choose between traditional at-home whitening kits, or professional whitening in our office. With either procedure, the basic whitening agents used are hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. The effects of the treatment are visible immediately and, depending on your lifestyle, and especially on what you ingest (use moderation with dark-colored liquids, like coffee, tea, and red wine) or if you smoke the brightening of your smile can last several months or more.
The choice of whether to whiten your teeth at home or in our office is always up to you. In-office procedures have been proven to be fast and highly effective for providing a bright smile. Hydrogen peroxide penetrates the teeth without altering tooth structure and has been known for its safe use in treating the mouth's soft tissue.
If your prefer the flexibility of home whitening procedures, our office can create custom-made whitening trays for you to use at your convenience; they work using highly concentrated carbamide peroxide, available at our office. Ideally, the best regimen is to have an initial in-office procedure, achieve the degree of whitening you wish for, and then do occasional touch-ups as needed at home with your custom trays.