Teeth Whitening Facts and Myths
Potential Teeth Whitening Customers want to know: What system produces the whitest smile for the money? How much will that great smile cost? How much time will it take! And, how much of a hassle is it? The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate teeth whiteners, so, where does this leave the consumer? The Consumer is left somewhat puzzled and downright confused. Most people hesitate or hold off on pursuing their beautiful white smile due to the worry of wasting time and money.
How does whitening actually work?
We use peroxide-based chemistry. Peroxide compounds are able to whiten teeth through a process called oxidation. Peroxide has the ability to penetrate the inner aspect of the enamel within a matter of only a few minutes after application where there are complex organic molecules within the tooth that reflect a specific wavelength of light and are responsible for the color. It has been shown that by releasing free radicals, peroxide has the ability to oxidize the color-producing organic compounds found within the enamel's organic make-up. When these organic compounds are oxidized, the residual molecules reflect less light, thereby creating a reduction or elimination of the discoloration - whiter teeth! What peroxide compounds are used in a whitening system? Current compounds are hydrogen peroxide and Carbamide peroxide. In-store or over-the-counter whitening systems use hydrogen peroxide. In-office whitening can utilize both Carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide. We use Hydrogen Peroxide. What are the strengths available and how are they classified? Peroxide-based whiteners can be classified into three categories: Professionally applied Hydrogen Peroxide - 5% to 15%+ Carbamide Peroxide - 30%
Professionally dispensed products
Hydrogen Peroxide - 10%
Carbamide Peroxide - 16%
Hydrogen Peroxide - up to 10%
What whitening treatment options are available? There are 2 main categories of Teeth Whitening Systems:
Professional whitening is best performed with light technology. Light technology is referred to as photopolymerization and was first approved by the FDA for teeth whitening in 1996. The optimal light technique that is on the market today is: blue-light. Application of a high concentration of Peroxide-based gel is applied to the tooth for 15 minute intervals. The blue-light system works by accelerating the chemical reaction. This provides faster, more effective results. There are some concerns associated with the light generating heat and the possible adverse effect it may have on the teeth, that is why we use cold blue-light technology. The primary benefit of professional whitening is that the process takes only one in-office visit and results can be dramatic and almost immediate. In the past, the one disadvantage was cost. Dental office solutions cost between $400-$1,000. Our treatments cost between $99 and $149, a significant savings.
Custom-fitted trays are made by first making impressions of both upper and lower teeth by using silicone. The benefit of custom trays are increased effectiveness and is directly related to the percentage of peroxide and length of time it is in direct contact with the tooth surface. With a custom tray the whitening agent is able to remain in direct contact with each tooth, allowing
for more accurate and uniform whitening with less chance of seepage and gum irritation. Trays also allow for inexpensive and convenient re-treating and touch-up as needed.
Whitening strips are probably the most common in-store systems used. To create a more affordable approach to whitening and simple delivery system, these strips were first introduced in 2000. Major manufacturers offering strip systems varying in concentration of hydrogen peroxide from 3 to 10 percent. The cost for whitening strip systems range from $25 to $45 and can easily be found in most grocery and drug stores. At one time, Whitening Strips were the only alternative option available to consumers. We offer professional quality teeth whitening at a price not much more than over-the-counter strip systems. Disadvantages of the strip system include the fact that the strips slide around easily and can produce uneven whitening or increased gum
irritation. Strips can also be messy during application and removal. One of the newest systems has a dissolving effect that can leave a sticky residue and unpleasant taste. Treatments can takes up to a month. Often times they just
Brush-on systems are currently found in a stylish pen. The primary benefits are ease and convenience. The disadvantage of this system is the short period of time the whitening agent is in contact with the tooth. It is also difficult to isolate the teeth from the lips and tissues so they tend to dilute the whitening agent, negating it's effectiveness. However, these are for mobie and quick use and therefore we feel there is a need for Teeth Whitening Pen. This should be viewed as a touch up solution and not an alternative to professional solutions that utilized light technology and high concentration of Carbamide peroxide based gel
There are two types of over-the-counter tray systems. However, these would be better described as pre-formed strips. These trays look and feel like strips that fit over the front of the teeth and wrap around onto the inside surface. These trays are pre-filled with a thin coating of a hydrogen peroxide-based gel. The cost is comparable to whitening strips. These are more secure than
strips and provide more control with placement. Our treatment is just as economical and much more effective with the assistances of light technology and Carbamide peroxide in a fraction of the time.
Another tray-type whitening is referred to as a boil and bite system. These
trays are softened by warm water and tempt to duplicate a traditional tray
system. The main disadvantages are uneven fits which can lead to uneven
whitening and even gum irritation. Our treatment is just as economical
and much more effective with the assistances of light technology and Carbamide
peroxide in a fraction of the time.
What influences the whitening process?
A primary reason results vary significantly is because many factors influence the whitening process. Some can be controlled and some can not. Plus, people's
genetics, life-styles and even the integrity of the various systems may vary. That being said, here are factors that contribute to a difference in results: The Color of the Teeth at the Start - teeth that are yellowish respond to Whitening better than teeth that tend to gray or brown. Teeth that tend to appear gray have been effected by exposure to anti-biotics. The most widely
known is the antibiotic, tetracycline. Brown is often seen with excessive intake of fluoride. Excessive fluoride may also create an appearance of mottling or a blotchy look to the enamel and make it difficult to achieve the optimal results. Unique, hereditary whitening potential each individual has a level at which their teeth cannot whitenany more. Clean teeth- best results are achieved if your teeth are thoroughly brushed and clean prior to your Whitening experience. Percentage of whitening agent it's simple, the higher the concentration, the
greater the results. However, a higher concentration of the whitening agent can also lead to greater risk of sensitivity. Therefore, the percentage of whitening agent should be determined based on: how sensitive your teeth are ; if you have any root surfaces exposed; the delivery system you choose and over what period you want results. In-store or over-the-counter systems have a much lower whitening agent percentage, so it takes much longer and may require more frequent touch-up. Duration of time - the whitening agent is in direct contact with the tooth surface. Each system requires a different time line and should be followed accordingly. The key is to maintain direct contact with the entire tooth to provide even whitening results. Our treatments take just 15 minutes with the least chance of soft tissue irritation. Oral habits - can play a major role in the whitening process. Before any application, it is a good idea to thoroughly brush and floss plaque, stain and food debris from the surfaces of the teeth. Maintaining good oral hygiene will keep your smile looking brighter longer. Avoid - foods and drinks dark in color or that are acidic (tea, coffee, sodas, wine, grape juice, chocolate, orange juice), smoking and chewing tobacco. Beware of oral home care products that contain alcohol and dyes/colors or may be high in abrasion or acidity.
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