Your smile is a key factor in the first impression that you leave. A part of that smile is the color of your teeth. When your teeth are discolored, not only is your beautiful smile dulled, the discoloration can cause you to look older than your real age. Discoloration can also cause you to become self-conscious, and hide your smile, giving off the impression that you are unfriendly. At National Dental Hicksville, we can restore the beauty of your smile with whitening.
Causes of Discoloration
The outer layer of your teeth, or your enamel, is a hard and mineralized, and beautiful pearly white. However, over time, microfractures can form in the enamel. These fractures easily catch and hold stains, pigments and other debris. There are several things that can contribute to the discoloration of your teeth:
- Certain foods and beverages: Certain foods and drinks, such as coffee, red wine, and curries, contain dark pigments. These pigments adhere to your enamel, dulling the shine of your teeth.
- Smoking: Cigarettes, and other tobacco products contain many chemicals. Two of these chemicals – tar and nicotine – are responsible for staining. Tar is naturally dark, while nicotine turns dark upon contact with oxygen.
- Certain medications: Medicine like doxycycline and tetracycline can stain your teeth, as can some asthma and blood pressure medications.
- Your age: As you get older, your teeth naturally darken.
At-Home Whitening Products
There are plenty of products that you can pick up over the counter that promise to whiten your teeth. These products include toothpaste, strips, gels, and pens. Whitening toothpaste contains abrasives that scrub away minor surface stains. Strips gels and pens contain low levels of bleaching agents. They can help with minor stains. If you have more stubborn stains, however, professional whitening can help.
At National Dental, we offer in-office, or chairside, whitening. This type of whitening is performed right in our office, and only takes an hour of your time. The procedure is completely pain-free. We start by cleaning your teeth. Next, we apply a gel to your gums, which is designed to protect them from the bleaching agent. We then apply the bleaching agent to your teeth. A special light is directed at your teeth, which activates the active ingredient. Oxygen is released, targeting stains and removing them. Your teeth are noticeably several shades whiter, almost immediately.
Take Home Whitening Trays
We also offer take-home whitening trays. This allows you to get the benefits of professional whitening in the comfort of your own home. Molds of your mouth are used to create custom trays. We then provide you with the bleaching agent. You wear the trays for a set number of hours each day. Results are noticeable in about a week.
Prolong the Whitening Effects
Whitening gives you back your beautiful smile, but the effects are not permanent. There are ways, however, that you can make them last longer:
- Limit foods and beverages that can stain your teeth, and follow them with a glass of water.
- Drink dark beverages through a straw to bypass the teeth.
- Quit smoking.
- Brush and floss your teeth regularly, and maintain regular dental visits.
With a brighter, whiter smile, your confidence is restored, and you will not be able to stop smiling. Contact National Dental Hicksville at (516) 629-5086 to schedule your appointment today.