August 20, 2018
In an ultra-visual world, your appearance is always being evaluated, and when you meet a new person, one of the first things he or she will notice is the condition of your teeth. Thus, stains can hinder the type of impression you make. One of the great ways to fix this problem is with teeth whitening. As you read on, your cosmetic dentist explains how the process works to remove stains and rejuvenate your smile.
A Look at Tooth Anatomy
Before we delve into how the teeth whitening process works, let’s get an understanding of the tooth’s anatomy and where the stains can be embedded. Here are the two main parts we’ll focus on:
- Enamel – The enamel is the outer surface of the tooth and consists of crystalline (hardened) calcium phosphate that forms the strongest material in the human body. The stains on the enamel are considered to be extrinsic.
- Dentin – The more sensitive area that lies beneath the enamel, the dentin houses a portion of the tooth’s nerves and has a yellowish color to it. As the enamel wears down, this area is more exposed. The resulting discoloration is considered to be intrinsic staining.
Professional Whitening vs. Store-Bought Options
For our purposes here, when we use the term “teeth whitening,” it is in reference to professional whitening using high-powered bleaches that are able to penetrate deep into the enamel and even into the dentin. This can only be provided by your dentist and not from over-the-counter alternatives. That’s because they lack the potency to remove stubborn stains.
How Teeth Whitening Works
The powerful whitening agents are able to address extrinsic and most intrinsic stains in just one visit. The process starts with your dentist securing your soft tissues to protect them from being irritated and then carefully applying the whitening gel. A special light is then used to activate the bleaches, which usually takes around 20 minutes to complete.
After each round of treatment, your cosmetic dentist will evaluate your smile using a shade guide to determine the effectiveness. If the desired result isn’t achieved, the process will be repeated in a safe manner. After the final application, your specialist may apply a fluoride treatment to reduce sensitivity.
You’ll leave the office with a smile that gleams six to 10 times brighter than your previous condition!
About the Author
After earning his DDS degree from State University of New York at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine, Dr. Hodong Kwon went on to complete his Advanced Education in General Dentistry residency, which equipped him with training in cosmetic dentistry. He has since gone on to utilize his skill set to provide patients with renewed confidence by improving the appearance of their teeth. To get the smile of your dreams with teeth whitening, you can find Dr. Kwon at Kwon Dental, and he can be reached for more information through his website.
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