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Teeth Whitening

Your smile is important and, whether you realize it or not, it often makes your first impression on others. But even people who practice great dental hygiene can still accumulate stains that could reduce their confidence. 

With teeth whitening treatment from Castle Dental, you can make the best first impression with a dazzling smile. Castle Dental offers take-home and in-office teeth whitening treatments that can brighten your teeth up to 10 shades whiter, removing a lifetime of stains and aging from your smile in a single appointment at one of our offices.

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Why aren’t my teeth white? I brush them!

Just because a tooth appears discolored, stained,  or yellow, doesn’t mean that the tooth is unhealthy or that you have poor dental hygiene. Strong teeth come in many shades to begin with, but years of acidic foods, coffee, and tobacco use can cause stains on your enamel–at the surface level–and even deeper, below the enamel. Age, trauma, or medication like antibiotics can also change the color of your teeth, even if they are healthy.

Should I get my teeth whitened?

If you feel you have lost confidence and your smile is affecting how you interact with your friends, family, and coworkers, a teeth whitening treatment might be for you. A great way to find out if you could benefit from a teeth whitening treatment is to schedule a professional cleaning with your dental office. During this visit, a dental hygienist removes any plaque or tartar that has accumulated on your teeth and your gums. Removing this plaque in a lot of cases can whiten your teeth and brighten your smile. If you’re not feeling confident with your smile after a professional dental cleaning, then it’s time to talk to your dentist about a teeth whitening appointment. 

Is teeth whitening covered by insurance?

Teeth whitening treatments address the appearance of your teeth, not their health or structure. Because of this, teeth whitening is considered elective and most dental insurance companies will not cover it. However, removing years of stains and aging for a brilliant white smile is often well worth the cost for many people. 

Castle Dental helps make teeth whitening more affordable with flexible financing and payment options as well as our own OneSmile dental plan.

Who is a good candidate for teeth whitening?

Any patient who is in good oral and physical health with no serious dental or medical conditions is considered to be a good candidate for teeth whitening. However, certain situations may keep your dentist from recommending teeth whitening treatments, especially if you are  under the age of 16, pregnant, or breastfeeding. 

An appointment with a Castle Dental dentist can help determine if a professional whitening treatment is right for you. Schedule one today!

What are some reasons I should not get my teeth whitened?

In general, pregnant women or women who are lactating should wait to receive any teeth whitening treatment.

There are a few more situations where oral health may prevent a person from getting their teeth professionally whitened, such as:

  1. Tooth decay. Cavities and advanced tooth decay will prevent you from receiving teeth whitening treatment. Cavities and tooth decay need to be treated to protect the tooth from further damage, restore the strength and integrity of the tooth, and prevent more serious dental health issues like gum disease, infection, or even tooth loss. Once your oral health improves, you may be able to proceed with teeth whitening treatment.
  2. Gum disease. Gum disease can create crevices between the teeth and gums. These areas can expose sensitive tooth tissue and nerves, causing pain during the teeth whitening process. You may need to consult with your dentist to have your gum disease treated before whitening your teeth. 
  3. Sensitive teeth. The chemicals used to whiten your smile–like hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide–can be hard on already sensitive teeth. Using sensitivity toothpaste or receiving fluoride treatments can reduce sensitivity and better prepare you for whitening chemicals and procedures. 
  4. Stains caused by antibiotic use. Taking the medication tetracycline can cause stains on your teeth that cannot be removed with teeth whitening treatments. If you have these stains and are bothered by them, consult with your dentist. They may recommend veneers or another restorative or cosmetic procedure to help perfect your smile. 
  5. Restorations. If you’ve had procedures to replace or restore missing teeth such as bonding, crowns, bridges, or implants your dentist may advise against a teeth whitening treatment. These materials used for these restorations typically don’t change color when a whitening solution is applied, making your natural teeth contrast more dramatically with the restored ones. 

What kinds of professional teeth whitening are there?

In-office treatments and at-home teeth whitening kits are the two main ways of whitening your teeth professionally. 

In-office teeth whitening

In-office teeth whitening treatments use chemicals that are much stronger than those sold over-the-counter and that must be applied by a trained dentist to avoid injury or damage to the oral tissue.

Pros of in-office teeth whitening:

  • Performed in your dentist’s office
  • Produces fastest and most visible results
  • Can brighten your teeth up to 10 shades whiter, sometimes in just one visit

The process of in-office teeth whitening:

  1. The dentist begins by determining the current shade of your teeth as a starting point to measure progress throughout the treatment.
  2. Your  teeth will be polished with special pumice and a cheek retractor will be placed to keep your lips, tongue, and other mouth tissue away from the chemicals that will be applied to the surface of your teeth.
  3.  A special protective liquid rubber “dam” or resin will be placed between the gaps of your gums and exposed teeth and a gel will be placed around the edges of your gums to protect them.
  4.  The dentist will apply a whitening gel to the teeth that includes the active ingredients hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. A UV light may also be used during this step of the process to activate the whitening solution. 

This is considered one “session” of in-office teeth whitening. Each session takes between 15-20 minutes and can be repeated up to 4 times in a single appointment. Your dentist will finish your appointment by rinsing out your mouth, polishing your teeth again and helping you assess your results. 

At-home teeth whitening

At-home teeth whitening consists of custom-made trays and prescription-strength bleaching agents that you use at home to whiten your teeth gradually.

Pros of at-home teeth whitening:

  • You can do it in the comfort of your own home
  • Teeth are whitened gradually for less dramatic results
  • Fit is customized to your teeth

The process of at-home teeth whitening:

  1. The dentist will take a mold of your teeth that is sent off to a lab to create a customized whitening tray. 
  2. When the trays are ready, they are sent either to your dentist or directly to you with a prescription-strength whitening solution and specific instructions. 
  3. You’ll follow the directions for application right at home.

The custom molds of professional at-home whitening treatments are different than those you can find at retail stores or even online. They fit more snugly than off-the-shelf ones, ensuring the more powerful bleaching solution reaches all areas of your teeth without irritating your gums and other mouth tissue. 

What should I expect after a teeth whitening treatment?

No matter which method you use, professional teeth whitening treatments can deliver a brighter smile with virtually no side effects. Some patients experience increased tooth sensitivity and irritated gums immediately after treatment, but these symptoms are generally temporary and improve within 48 hours. If these symptoms persist, your dentist may recommend a temporary change to your diet–avoiding very hot, cold, or crunchy foods–consistent use of sensitivity toothpaste, or over-the-counter pain medication to alleviate them.

How do I keep my teeth white after a teeth whitening treatment?

Professional teeth whitening can have a stunning effect on a person’s smile. However, this procedure is not necessarily preventative and it is up to you to take care of your new, brightened smile. However, there are some simple things you can do to help your pearly whites last longer. 

  • Practice a good oral hygiene routine, including daily brushing and flossing. This will help make sure your smile stays white and healthy.
  • Have a professional cleaning every 6 months to remove tartar and plaque buildup.
  • Limit or completely avoid dark-colored beverages like soda or coffee. If you can’t live without it, use a straw and brush your teeth afterward whenever you can. 
  • Limit tobacco and nicotine use, including chewing tobacco, cigarettes, and vaping devices, or consider stopping altogether.

Whiten Your Teeth Today with Teeth Whitening Services from Castle Dental

If you’re ready for a stunning smile, schedule a teeth whitening appointment at a Castle Dental office near you. From routine cleanings to in-office treatments, Castle Dental offers quality, professional dental services at an affordable price. You’ll smile brighter knowing our multiple retail locations have flexible scheduling, extended hours, and patient-friendly payment options. Find your favorite Castle Dental location here or schedule your appointment online and start smiling with confidence!