A few years ago, I started thinking carefully about what I could do to improve my smile. I had lived with crooked, yellowed teeth for most of my adult life, and honestly, I just wanted to feel beautiful. I started thinking about working with a cosmetic dentist, and before I knew it, I was in an office getting a complimentary consultation. I learned about a variety of different procedures that could improve my look, and it was really fun. I wanted to create a blog all about making smiles more beautiful, which is why I made this website. Check out this blog for great information about dentistry.
If your teeth are looking yellow and discolored, you may be considering a visit to the dentist for professional tooth whitening. But while tooth whitening procedures are very helpful for many patients, they are not always necessary. Sometimes, all you need to get the whiter smile you desire is a professional cleaning appointment. Patients often get these two types of procedures and their purposes confused, so here's a closer look to clarify any misconceptions and help you decide on the procedure that's best for you.
Standard dental cleaning is known as prophylaxis. Experts generally recommend having prophylaxis performed every six months, or perhaps more often if you are excessively prone to decay or gum disease. The primary goal of prophylaxis is to remove tartar, which is the hard substance that forms on your teeth when plaque is not removed properly. Tartar contributes to gum disease and tooth decay, so removing it reduces your risk of these ailments. However, removing the tartar from your teeth also has another nice side effect: it whitens your smile. This is because tartar has a yellowish tint.
Prophylaxis is considered preventative dental care, so it is typically covered by dental insurance. It's an easy procedure that may cause very mild discomfort if your gums are sensitive, but there's no need for anesthesia. It's definitely worthwhile to have prophylaxis performed before you make any hard and fast decisions about whether you need whitening treatments. After your cleaning, you may find that your teeth are white enough to satisfy your needs. If you do decide you still want whitening, your teeth will at least be completely clean, which makes whitening more effective.
Whitening treatments are performed with the sole goal of achieving a whiter smile. There are no health benefits to whitening, aside from perhaps improving your mood due to increased self-confidence. Since these are purely cosmetic treatments, they are not usually covered by dental insurance. You'll have to pay for the entire procedure out of pocket. Thankfully, you have a couple of different options that come at various price points.
Take-Home Whitening Trays
If you're on a tight budget, this is likely your best whitening option as it will only cost about $400. In the office, your dentist will take a mold of your teeth and use it to design a custom tray that fits around your teeth. When you get home, you fill the tray with a bleaching solution provided by your dentist, and then you bite into the trays. Let the bleach work its magic for the recommended time, and then rinse your mouth clean.
At-home whitening trays are effective for patients with general tooth discoloration due to aging or drinking dark beverages. They are not, however, overly effective for removing deeper, more set-in stains like those from tobacco. You must use the trays regularly over the span of a few weeks in order to achieve noticeable results.
Professional In-Office Treatments
If you have more intense, set-in stains or desire a more dramatic whitening effect, you may want to go with a professional, in-office whitening treatment instead. Your dentist will apply a bleaching agent to your teeth, and then use a laser to activate the solution. In just one to two treatments, your smile will be many shades lighter.
These treatments can cost $650 or more, but they have a few advantages over whitening trays:
If you are not happy with the color of your teeth, it's worth your while to try a cleaning session first. If you're still not happy with their color, then your next step should be to schedule a whitening treatment. Contact dental offices like Dental Care Of Scottsburg - Randol O Woolbright Jr DDS for more information.Share
8 August 2017