Is In-Office Teeth Whitening Right For You?

Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures out there—and for good reason. You are able to improve your appearance without invasive surgery. Some in-office treatments are as little as $300, which is reasonably priced compared to other cosmetic procedures. There are minimal risks, and the results can last a very long time.

Before you invest in in-office whitening, you need to ask yourself a few questions to make sure this procedure is right for you.

What Kind of Stains Do You Want to Fix?

If you want to whiten your teeth because they look yellow, you may want to ask your dentist if these stains will actually whiten. Because teeth are translucent, what you may be seeing is the yellow dentin underneath the enamel. As a person gets older, the enamel wears down and can show this underlying dentin. If that's the case, whitening won't help. Instead, you may want to opt for veneers or bonding. If the yellow stains are superficial, then whitening could help.

Do you want to whiten your teeth because of white or brown spots? These spots could be from a condition known as fluorosis and may not be able to be whitened right away. Fluorosis is an innocuous condition that causes tooth discoloration if someone ingests too much fluoride. However, if you try to whiten these spots, you could get uneven results. You should first try a product, like MI Paste, that contains calcium and milk-derived proteins to remineralize your teeth. These kinds of products will lessen the mottling and make in-office whitening a more viable solution later on.

Do You Have Any Habits That Would Negate the Results?

If you smoke or drink beverages that stain your teeth, you may want to hold off on whitening. You can certainly enjoy good results like other patients, but the downside is that these results will fade more quickly.

Wine, soda, tea, fruit juice, and coffee are all notorious for staining teeth, so if you can cut down on your intake, then your whiting results could last years instead of months. The same is true for smoking. If you don't want to curb these habits, then a good option may be take-home trays from your dental office. These trays are more affordable than in-office whitening, and they have better results than over-the-counter products.

Do You Have Sensitive Teeth?

Again, there are few side effects from whitening, but tooth sensitivity is one of them. If you have overly sensitive teeth, then that issue should be taken care of beforehand. MI Paste not only works on fluorosis. It can also help tooth sensitivity. Your dentist can also prescribe a toothpaste that addresses your sensitivity.

Sensitive teeth is a common side effect for people who overbleach their teeth, so be sure you follow your dentist's recommendations. You'll be able to get your desired shade without causing gum or tooth sensitivity.

For more information, talk to companies like Royal Oak Dental.