By Rafael Mercado, DDS on July 18, 2021
Stained teeth is a common concern and source of embarrassment that can be easily treated with teeth whitening. Teeth whitening removes built-up stains, revealing a vibrant white smile, while also boosting confidence.
Dr. Rafael Mercado offers both in-office and at-home teeth whitening treatments to fit with each patient’s schedule and teeth whitening goals. Teeth whitening at home provides our Castle Hills, TX, patients the opportunity to enhance their smiles from the convenience of their own homes.
Professional Results at Home
Professional at-home teeth whitening treatments can lift years of dental discoloration and provide greater whitening results than over-the-counter options. This is because at-home teeth whitening treatments from our Castle Hills practice use customized whitening trays that allow the whitening solution to sit evenly on the teeth.
Professional at-home whitening gels also have a higher concentration of hydrogen peroxide, a whitening agent, than available in most over-the-counter treatments.
Can All Stains Be Treated with Teeth Whitening?
Not all dental stains can be treated with teeth whitening treatments. Stains that are intrinsic, meaning within the teeth, are too deep for treatment with teeth whitening. Also, dark stains caused by trauma don’t typically respond to whitening treatments. Other options, like porcelain veneers, may be better suited to treat such stains.
Teeth whitening is most effective at treating common surface stains caused by foods and the aging process.
What Is the At-home Teeth Whitening Process?
Teeth whitening at home is a convenient and easy way to rejuvenate the smile. Depending on the type of treatment used, at-home whitening trays may be worn in the morning or at night while sleeping.
For both daytime and nighttime treatments, a whitening solution is injected inside the trays. Trays are worn on both the upper and lower teeth. Daytime trays are typically worn for 30 minutes a day for about two weeks. If an overnight whitening treatment is used, trays are worn while sleeping. The duration of treatment will depend on the desired level of whitening.
Regardless of the type of treatment, patients should thoroughly brush and floss before wearing their whitening trays to remove plaque that can cause uneven whitening if left on the teeth.
Keeping a Bright Smile after Teeth Whitening
At-home teeth whitening may be repeated whenever the teeth need brightening but taking small steps every day can help prolong the results of treatment. Some things you can do to maintain teeth whitening results include:
- Brush and floss regularly: Brushing twice a day and flossing once a day are two of the most effective ways to prolong whitening results and protect oral health.
- Brush after meals when possible: Brushing after meals is beneficial for removing food and drink remnants that can discolor the teeth. If brushing is not possible, swishing the mouth with water can help.
- Avoid certain foods and drinks: Dark color foods and drinks, like coffee, soft drinks, marinara sauce, and dark berries, can discolor the teeth especially when enjoyed frequently. Avoiding such foods and drinks can help keep the teeth vibrant.
- Don’t smoke: Smoking causes the teeth to quickly discolor to a yellow or brown color. Smokers who want to keep their teeth white and healthy should give up smoking.
Schedule a Consultation
For more information about teeth whitening at home, or to find out if you’re a candidate, call our Castle Hills practice at (210) 405-1257 to schedule a consultation.