Do you have stains on your teeth that you just can’t seem to get rid of? Have you brushed your teeth repeatedly and they aren’t getting any lighter? Teeth whitening is a service that’s offered by your dentist to help improve your smile and make you feel more confident about showing it. There are options available in the dental aisle at your local pharmacy as well, but if you’ve tried those and realized you need a more robust option it’s time to contact your dentist. We’ll explore some of the whitening options available below.
Before We Begin: What Causes Tooth Discoloration?
The causes of tooth discoloration are well known, with the most fundamental cause being poor oral hygiene. While usually a factor it doesn’t mean that this is the only thing that can cause your teeth to become discolored, environmental factors play a role as well. From our choices of beverage to our eating habits and even smoking, there are many potential reasons our teeth may be less than pearly white.
Smoking – This is one of the most common causes as it bathes our teeth in nicotine and tar.
Tea Or Coffee – Both of these substances contain staining factors as well as caffeine.
Red Wine – Delicious? Yes. Also full of tannins and other staining agents? Also yes.
Colas – Dark colored sodas contain caramel coloring, and that can get right into your teeth.
Red Sauces – The rich red of tomatoes can also stain our teeth.
Dark Fruits – Blueberries, Blackberries, Raspberries, all delicious and good for us, but staining.
As you can see it’s not just unhealthy choices that can lead to the staining and discoloration of teeth, even healthy foods can contain agents that will stain our teeth. There are also genetic factors (determining the natural durability and permeability of our teeth) that can make our teeth more likely to stain from outside factors.
So How Can I Whiten My Teeth?
As we mentioned above there are a number of potential options for whitening your teeth, including toothpaste that will whiten your teeth using mild abrasives and baking soda elements. You can also find special brushes that work with these toothpaste options to provide a more thorough and effective clean. Chewing gum and whitening strips are both available that will help whiten your teeth, and in the case of the chewing gum, it also contains an agent that will coat your teeth to defend against staining. The strips contain a hydrogen peroxide-infused gel to help bubble away organic sources of staining on your teeth. The other tool you can find on the dental aisle is whitening trays that you have to put in and keep on your teeth for about an hour. These are for more intense cleanings.
If you’ve tried all of these and none of them seem to help it’s time to contact Dr. Bob Dokhanchi at Fox Valley Dental for professional whitening. The work they perform at their Aurora, IL location helps hundreds of patients each year achieve that beautiful smile they’ve always dream of.