Having healthy, clean teeth is the most important thing for your overall oral health. But the leading cosmetic request of people across the country is for a whiter, brighter smile. The color of your teeth is not the only factor when determining oral health but because it can be associated with bad habits or poor oral hygiene, the color of your teeth may cause embarrassment and a lack of confidence if your teeth are less than dazzling. But if you have brightened your smile in the past, you may be wondering how often you need to get your teeth whitened. Depending on what method of whitening you used will determine how quickly you will need to repeat the process.
Results from the different whitening methods certainly vary and can take different lengths of time to achieve. Whitening your teeth too often can lead to tooth sensitivity and can even damage your teeth if the directions are not followed properly by waiting the appropriate amount of time between whitening treatments.
- Whitening Strips: These over-the-counter whitening strips are used for 30 minutes, twice a day for a few weeks depending on the number of strips.
- Results can last for 6 months
- Tray Whitening: The dentist prescribed at-home trays that are worn for less than 90 minutes at a time daily until desired color is achieved but under 21 days.
- Results can last for up to a year
- Paint-on teeth whiteners: The whitening agent is applied to the teeth, but in this case, instead of strips, the agent gel is painted on with a brush and then the gel hardens. It will eventually dissolve.
- Results last for about 24 hours until re-applied. This is not a long term solution.
- Whitening Toothpaste and Mouthwash: This can aid in brightening your smile but will probably not produce a drastic change.
- Results can last for a couple of months or longer if continually used and can be very helpful in maintaining a bright smile achieved by a different whitening method.
- In-office whitening treatments: This procedure allows you to walk in, sit down, and leave with whiter smile. In-office treatments last much longer because the bleaching goes deeper into each tooth.
- Though results vary person to person, most in-office whitening treatments last between 1 and 3 years.
As with all things, consulting a professional before using a product is always a good idea. Asking your dentist of the effectiveness and safety of using different kinds of teeth whitening methods based on your teeth can help you determine the best treatment for your smile. Your overall oral health is always something to consider before applying any kind of teeth whitening treatment and your trusted dentist will help you know the benefits and risks to each method.
Regardless of which whitening method you settle on, good habits will make it last longer. Habits, such as:
- Brushing twice a day and flossing daily
- Drinking water after eating or drinking dark beverages to avoid staining
- Avoid smoking and other tobacco products
- Using a teeth brightening mouthwash daily
- Using straws can avoid dark drinks from staining teeth
If you live in Coralville, IA and are looking for a friendly, trusted dentist to guide you in choosing the best and longest lasting whitening treatment, call Coral West Dental today!