Cosmetic dentistry is a growing industry that has faced and overcome a lot of controversy in the past. Teeth whitening in particular leads the industry as the number one procedure performed.
In cosmetic dentistry, there are two terms that refer to whitening the teeth. One is teeth whitening, which is restoring the teeth to the original color through cleaning procedures. The other is teeth bleaching, which refers to when a product whitens the teeth beyond their original color.
Some over-the-counter teeth bleaching products are abrasive and can cause minor damage to the teeth. In cases where teeth bleaching has been harmful, the bleaching has only resulted in increased tooth sensitivity and gum irritation.
As long as teeth bleaching occurs under the supervision of a dentist and with dentist recommended products, it will not harm the teeth. The definition of teeth whitening includes basic products, such as toothpaste, and is often helpful in protecting the teeth from further damage.
The three main teeth whitening methods include over the counter products, in-office treatments, and professionally dispensed take-home whitening kits. There are advantages and disadvantages to all options.
In-office treatments tend to be the most costly and inconvenient, but they do produce the quickest results. By seeing a professional cosmetic dentist, the gums will be protected from irritation and a higher concentrated peroxide gel will be used.
Take-home whitening kits are less expensive than in-office treatments and are considered to produce the best results over a longer period of time. The kits contain a lower concentrated peroxide gel than the dentist would be able to use in the office.
Over-the-counter whitening products are by far the cheapest option, but are often the most risky. These products feature an even lower concentrated gel and may only whiten the front teeth where as the other options will whiten the whole smile.
People turn to teeth whitening as they become older and as their teeth are damaged through daily use. The teeth darken as the enamel surface is worn down, allowing the interior of the teeth, called Dentin, to show through.
It is easy for debris and stains to build up in the crack of the enamel as well. These stains and debris are comparatively easier to remove, such as through normal teeth brushing.
There are two types of stains that cause teeth to darken in color. They are called extrinsic and instrinsic stains.
Extrinsic stains are caused by consumptions of dark-colored food and beverages, tobacco, and other daily usage. These stains are more easily removed than intrinsic stains.
Intrinsic stains form inside the teeth and are harder to remove.They are caused by aging, exposure to minerals during tooth formation, trauma, and excessive ingestion of fluoride.
These stains can be removed through bleaching. However, home based teeth whitening could take an extended amount of time to produce results.
How white a person’s teeth can become through treatment varies from person to person. A lucky person’s teeth can be whitened nine shades, while a typical treatment only whitens the teeth two to seven shades.
After treatment dentists recommend a variety of things to help maintain white teeth. These things include avoiding dark-colored foods and drinks for a week after whitening and drinking dark-colored beverages through a straw. It is also important to continue brushing and flossing well after meals and before bedtime.
In addition to age, there are several other factors that can cause teeth to darken. The original color of a person’s teeth often affects what color their teeth are later in life.
There are generally two different colors of teeth: yellowish-brown and greenish-gray. Yellowish-brown are easier to whiten.
Eating habits also play a huge role in how white teeth are. Acidic foods such as citrus fruits and dark-colored foods and drinks produce the most damage in teeth.
Of course tobacco or drug use contribute tremendously to the damaging and darkening of teeth. Nicotine and tetracycline especially leave brown stains that will sink through the teeth.
Grinding of the teeth under stress and or nervousness cracks the teeth creating niches for stains to develop. Trauma such as a fall or injury can also create cracks in which stains will develop.
The last determining factor of stain susceptibility is the original translucency or thinness of the teeth. This is determined by genetics, and the thinner and more transparent teeth are, the more difficult they are to whiten. Transparency is the only condition that is considered untreatable in whitening teeth.
Terry Daniels is a former dental assistant and has authored hundreds of articles relating to oral health. He worked for a dentist in Fort Lauderdale before becoming a guest dental lecturer for the past 15 years.
whiten my teeth: teeth stains
Article Source: www.articlesnatch.com