How Does Teeth Whitening Actually Work?

Teeth whitening is a process that many people often get done to improve their confidence. Teeth bleaching gel contains an ingredient that opens the pores in the tooth which allows the active bleaching agent to seep through pores in the enamel into the dentin of the tooth. The oxygen molecules from the bleaching agent contact the discolored molecules latched to the tooth causing them to break away exposing the natural color of the tooth. Repeat applications are required before all stains have been removed. The number of applications varies based on the severity of the stains and the concentration of peroxide being used. Generally speaking, age is a good gauge, but you should also take into consideration dietary habits, oral hygiene habits, tobacco use, and special conditions such as dental fluorosis and tetracycline stains. I am going to be looking at how teeth whitening works and the benefits and risks there may be in getting the procedure.


Benefits of teeth whitening

Teeth whitening can help people gain confidence that they may have lacked before. This will improve their mental health and allow them to feel confident in themselves. Many places offer teeth whitening services and aim to improve the confidence of their patients. Teeth whitening enhances your appearance; food and drink such as coffee, tea, and sugary drinks can stain your teeth over time, so teeth whitening can improve this discoloration.

Teeth whitening is also affordable, so it is not inexpensive for someone who may want to get this procedure done in order to enhance their appearance.  Oral health should be a component of any dental procedure you consider as it is of the utmost importance to your broader health. Poor mouth health can lead to a slew of problems later in life. These problems include issues such as organ failure, heart conditions, cancer, and in severe cases death. When whitening your teeth with a dental professional, you will have stains removed the right way from your teeth allowing them to strengthen and become healthier.

Your eating, drinking, and oral hygiene habits can impact how long your teeth whitening results last. After you have completed any whitening treatment, your teeth are still susceptible to staining from beverages like tea and coffee, and certain foods. Rinsing your mouth or brushing your teeth soon after eating or drinking can keep those kinds of discoloring agents from settling into the surface of your teeth — and decrease the chance for plaque to build up.


What happens during teeth whitening

The dentist will take an impression of your teeth to make a mouthguard and tell you how to use it with a bleaching gel. Then, using your mouthguard at home, you consistently apply the gel for a specified period of time over 2 to 4 weeks. Some whitening gels can be left on for up to 8 hours at a time, which shortens the treatment period to 1 week. Laser whitening, also known as power whitening, is another type of teeth whitening system that a dentist can provide. A bleaching product is painted onto your teeth and then a light or laser is shone on them to activate the whitening. Laser whitening takes about an hour. Teeth whitening does not permanently change the color of your teeth, but it can drastically lighten the color for several months. Therefore, this may be a process you will want to get done a few times a year.


What are the risks?

As with most procedures, there are always risks. This may involve your gums being sensitive to the chemicals used in teeth whitening, particularly if you already have sensitive teeth. There is also a chance of burns to gums and some of the whitening kits used at home can harm tooth enamel. Your teeth may become more sensitive following teeth whitening. You may experience this on your first or second treatment, and it may diminish with time. Your dentist may recommend treating sensitivity with products that contain potassium nitrate and sodium fluoride gel. There are much more benefits than risks to this procedure, which proves that overall it is a safe procedure to endure for a brighter smile and improved self-esteem.

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