Teeth whitening is a simple, non-invasive cosmetic dental treatment that can change the color of your natural tooth enamel and enhance the beauty of your smile.
There are a number of ways to whiten teeth. You’ve probably seen tons of over-the-counter whitening products at your local drug store, from whitening toothpastes to rinses to whitening strips and other types of at-home treatments. However, the single most effective way to whiten teeth is with a professional teeth whitening session in your dentist’s office.
At Crystal Smiles, we offer in-office and take-home whitening options to patients wishing to brighten their teeth and take years off of their appearance. The process is safe and comfortable and the results will be long-lasting, provided you take good care of your teeth and avoid staining agents such as tobacco, coffee, tea, and red wine.
Since teeth whitening only works on natural tooth enamel, it is important to consider how the presence of any old fillings, crowns, etc. will affect the results of your whitening treatment. Replacement of any restorations will be done after bleaching so they will match the newly bleached teeth.
Reasons for tooth whitening:
- Fluorosis (excessive fluoridation during tooth development)
- Yellow teeth due to age or normal wear of outer tooth layer
- Stained teeth due to medications (tetracycline, etc.)
- Stains from coffee, tea, red wine, or smoking
What does tooth whitening involve?
The whitening process can be completed in as little as one hour. However, we highly recommend getting a dental cleaning before your teeth whitening. This will add some time to your appointment, but it will enable you to receive even more dramatic whitening results from the treatment.
The first step in the actual whitening process is to apply a protective material to your gums so that the whitening gel will not irritate them. Next, the whitening gel will be applied to your teeth. Then, we will position a special light over your teeth to activate the gel and speed the whitening process. This part of the treatment takes 20 to 30 minutes.
After your treatment, you will be given tips about how to keep your smile bright for as long as possible. You may wish to schedule recurring treatments to make sure your teeth are always white.
Veneers can completely reshape your teeth and your smile, covering a wide variety of dental issues and imperfections.
Veneers are very thin pieces of durable, tooth shaped porcelain that can be custom shaped and colored to match your teeth by a professional dental laboratory. They are bonded onto the front of teeth to create a beautiful and attractive smile.
As with most dental restorations, veneers are not permanent and will someday have to be replaced. However, they are very durable and will last many years, making them a great investment in your appearance and self-confidence.
Reasons for porcelain veneers:
- Crooked teeth
- Misshapen teeth
- Severely discolored or stained teeth
- Teeth that are too small or large
- Unwanted or uneven spaces
- Worn or chipped teeth
Getting veneers usually requires two visits to complete the process, with little or no anesthesia required during the procedure. First, the teeth are prepared by lightly buffing and shaping the surface, reducing it slightly to allow for the thickness of the veneer. A mold or impression of the teeth is taken and a shade (color) will then be chosen by you and your dentist.
On the second visit the teeth will be cleansed with special liquids to prep them for a durable bond. Bonding cement is then placed between the tooth and veneer and a special light beam is used to harden and set the bond.
You will receive care instructions for veneers. Proper brushing, flossing and regular dental visits will aid in the life of your new veneers.