Your smile creates an immediate, subconscious, visual impact on people you meet. A brighter smile gives the impression of youth, vitality, radiant health, happiness, and warmth. A bright smile is perceived as a healthy smile.
Deciduous (baby) teeth are typically whiter than the adult teeth that appear later. As we age, our adult teeth often become darker, yellower, or stained. This is partly why white teeth make people appear more youthful.
Just as there are some ways to lighten or brighten teeth, there are also several different ways for teeth to become discolored. The leading causes of darkened teeth are genetics, antibiotics, and certain foods, plus teeth tend to darken as we age. Internal tooth discoloration is caused by changes in the enamel of the tooth and the dentin.
Whitening can be done in the dental office or at home. For in-office whitening, your dentist probably will photograph your teeth first. This step will help him or her to monitor the progress of the treatment. Your dentist also will examine your teeth and ask you questions to find out what caused the staining.
Next, the dentist or a dental hygienist will clean your teeth. This will remove the film of bacteria, food and other substances that build up on your teeth and contribute to the staining. Once this is done, the whitening procedure begins.
For whitening at home, your dentist can make trays hold the whitening gel that fit your teeth precisely. Home whitening gel usually needs to be applied daily for two to three weeks. Over-the-counter kits also are widely available for home use. They provide trays to hold the gel or whitening strips that stick to your teeth. Talk to your dentist if you want to use these home products. Be sure to follow directions to avoid overuse and possible damage to your teeth and mouth.
If you are interested in teeth whitening in Fairfax, Merrifield, or South Riding, VA, we welcome you to Contact Us.
Our dental offices in Fairfax, Merrifield, and South Riding offer convenient locations with expanded hours to best fit your schedule.