If you want a dazzling white smile, the cosmetic dentists at Galleria Dental Aesthetics–serving McLean and Arlington, Virginia–can provide it. Stained & discolored teeth can affect your confidence and make you want to hide your smile. You, too, can have the brilliant, beautiful smile you see on your favorite celebrities with Arlington teeth whitening services.
WHAT IS TEETH WHITENING?
Teeth whitening sometimes referred to as tooth bleaching, is one of the quickest and easiest ways to make a considerable difference in your smile. From whitening toothpaste to professional teeth whitening treatments, having a white smile is now within virtually everyone’s reach. At Galleria Dental Aesthetics, we understand that many of our discerning patients desire immediate results, and we are dedicated to meeting those needs in our Tysons Corner and Arlington locations.
WHAT CAUSES TOOTH DISCOLORATION?
There are many factors that may cause tooth discoloration. Such factors include:
- Damage to the teeth
- Poor oral hygiene
- Antibiotic (tetracycline)
Over time, these stains may darken. Teeth whitening is one of the most common and effective cosmetic dental procedures performed today. Teeth whitening by the experienced cosmetic dentists at Galleria Dental Aesthetics can get your teeth whiter than they have been in years.
WHAT ARE MY OPTIONS FOR TEETH WHITENING?
At Galleria Dental Aesthetics, our cosmetic dentists in Northern Virginia can perform teeth whitening in our offices or provide you with take-home whitening trays. The whitening trays are custom made to fit the curves of your smile. A special whitening gel is used in the trays which are typically worn during the evening hours.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN IN-OFFICE TEETH WHITENING AND AT-HOME TEETH WHITENING?
Professional in-office whitening treatments used in our offices can significantly whiten your teeth in just one office visit. These types of systems use a higher concentration of whitening agent or bleach combined with a special light to increase the effectiveness of the whitening system. Because the entire process is monitored by a dental professional, the whitening results are even across the entire tooth surface as well as in between the teeth.
In contrast, over-the-counter methods typically take several weeks to achieve a level of whitening that may or may not reach your desired brightness. Inconsistent whitening over the tooth surface is probable because the strips are not molded to fit the nooks and crannies of your smile. Mouth saliva can interfere with the whitening process, and some products can cause the tooth enamel to become dry.
HOW LONG DOES TEETH WHITENING LAST?
Because tooth enamel is porous, natural teeth will always be susceptible to staining substances. Likewise, the eventual thinning of tooth enamel as you age can continue to cause tooth discoloration. It is for these reasons that tooth whitening is not a permanent cosmetic dental procedure. Depending on your personal habits and genetics, touch-up whitening treatments will most likely need to be performed in the future.
ARE THERE SIDE EFFECTS ON TEETH WHITENING?
The main side effect of teeth whitening is tooth or gum sensitivity, although not every patient will have this experience. Genetics, the concentration of the whitening agent or bleach, and the reaction of the whitening agent on the tooth enamel all play a part in how susceptible a patient may be to teeth whitening sensitivity. Desensitizing agents can minimize this potential side effect. A thorough dental examination by our trained team of professionals can help to identify some potential trouble areas so preventative measures can be taken to eliminate possible tooth and/or gum sensitivity.
IS TEETH WHITENING PAINFUL?
Early in the teeth whitening trend, patients were likely to experience temporary tooth sensitivity and “zingers” of pain while their treatment was ongoing. We’ve come a long way since then. Today, we’ve got ideal concentrations of peroxide whitening agents to lift stains. Desensitizing solutions can also be applied to decrease the mild sensitivity that may occur. If you already have sensitive teeth, talk with your dentist about how we may help you undergo teeth whitening comfortably.
HOW LONG DOES TEETH WHITENING TAKE?
We offer in-office and home whitening options to meet each patient’s needs. How long whitening takes first depends on which system you choose. In-office whitening takes about an hour. This method typically achieves dramatic results in just one visit. However, in instances of severe staining, patients may undergo in-office whitening as a starting point before moving on to whiten at home. Home whitening is conducted daily for a period of up to two weeks, depending on the extent of whitening a person desires. When home whitening is selected, it is important to commit to consistent daily use so as not to prolong the bleaching process.
DOES TEETH WHITENING DAMAGE YOUR TEETH?
Teeth whitening works by permeating the upper layer of enamel with a peroxide agent. When conducted as directed, this process is safe and effective. Professional teeth whitening is overseen by your dentist and is performed only after a thorough dental examination. Patients are advised on the safe frequency of teeth whitening based on their dental structure and oral health. Typically, retreatment can occur once or twice a year to maintain a radiant smile.
HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR TEETH WHITENING?
There is very little that needs to be done before undergoing in-office teeth whitening treatment. After a thorough consultation and dental exam, we may recommend a professional cleaning to remove plaque and tartar that may be present. If other dental problems are detected during the exam, they will need to be treated before moving on to cosmetic procedures.
Because teeth whitening does not change the shade of restorations like bonding, veneers, and crowns, some patients choose to have these fixtures changed as a part of their smile makeover with teeth whitening.
Patients who have sensitive teeth or are concerned about sensitivity due to teeth whitening may want to start brushing with a special toothpaste a week or so before treatment.
CAN TOOTH WHITENING REMOVE STAINS?
Teeth whitening treatment is intended for the removal of surface stains. These are the kind of stains that develop within the outer layer of enamel. Typically, external stains result from foods and beverages that deposit tiny molecules into the tubules of enamel. In such instances, professional teeth whitening is very effective.
There is another type of tooth stain that is referred to as an intrinsic stain. This kind of staining occurs on the inside of a tooth. It may be the result of injury to the tooth or of medication use. Because intrinsic stains do not lie in the outer layer of enamel, they are not likely to respond to teeth whitening. These stains can be successfully covered with a porcelain veneer.
CAN YELLOW TEETH BE WHITE AGAIN?
Yes! Stained, yellow teeth are not always a permanent condition. In fact, there are multiple methods used to bring yellow teeth back to their natural, radiant white color. Whether done at home or professionally at a dental office, dentists are able to give patients brighter smiles than ever before, eliminating the coloring that foods and drinks have left behind on the teeth over time.
DO DENTISTS JUDGE PEOPLE WITH YELLOW TEETH?
No, great dentists certainly do not judge patients who have yellow teeth. At Galleria Dental Aesthetics, Dr. Chong Lee, Dr. Joseph Oh, and Dr. Kirsten Lee understand that yellow or stained teeth are seemingly an indicator of poor oral health rather than a cause of it. Whitening yellow teeth is easily a fixable oral condition, and many dentists are happy to provide the services patients need to restore their shining smiles!
HOW CAN I WHITEN YELLOW TEETH AT HOME?
After getting professional teeth whitening done, some patients may wonder how to keep the same bright, white results at home. From daily practices to weekly rinses, here are a few ways you can prevent your teeth from staining and yellowing at home:
- Use a whitening toothpaste when you brush your teeth twice a day
- Use whitening strips once a week to help combat yellow stains
- Homemade whitening solutions such as the combination of baking powder and lemon juice, can lighten your teeth in two minutes
- Use a whitening mouthwash or rinse twice a day for 1 minute to notice brighter results over time.
IS TEETH WHITENING EXPENSIVE?
On average, in-office teeth whitening procedures can cost anywhere between $500 to $1000. Unless whitening your teeth is medically needed as a result of an oral infection or another impactful condition that puts the health of your teeth at risk, most dental insurance providers may not cover all or part of the whitening procedure as it is often a cosmetic service. However, at Galleria Dental Aesthetic, our team is happy to work with every patient on a payment plan that fits your budget. Most patients find that this investment is worth every penny, as it not only whitens their teeth but also boosts their confidence, making talking, smiling, and laughing effortless.
AM I A CANDIDATE FOR TEETH WHITENING?
Many teens and adults are excellent candidates for teeth whitening treatment. If your oral health is good and you wish to have a brighter smile, contact our office. We are happy to schedule your consultation and exam, after which we can discuss the method of teeth whitening that may best suit your needs.
SCHEDULE YOUR TEETH WHITENING CONSULTATION TODAY!
If you lack self-confidence due to staining on your teeth, contact the dentists at Galleria Dental Aesthetics in Tysons Corner for an initial tooth whitening appointment. You can call the office at 703.448.1020. We serve the areas of McLean, Arlington, Tysons and surrounding areas in northern Virginia.