Teeth Whitening in Culver City and Los Angeles Metropolitan Area
Teeth Whitening or Bleaching can enhance the appearance of your teeth by brightening teeth that are dark, discolored, or stained.
It is natural to expect that white teeth should be the norm. It gives the appearance of cleanness and health to the teeth and smile.
The process was discovered when studies were been made using plastic carriers, that covered the teeth, to administer Oxygen Peroxide to treat Gum Disease. The researchers noted that the teeth became whiter than prior to the application of the Peroxide solution. Voila! There it was the beginning of the Teeth Whitening revolution.
The tooth color is impacted by different factors:
- Naturally dark teeth. The tooth color is mostly determined by the color of the internal portion of the teeth, the Dentin. The outer layer works more like lenses that filter and disperse the light. Some people have yellow teeth, and these cases are the ones which has the best response to the Whitening process.
- Dark colors caused by external factors: In the past, Tetracycline, an Antibiotic, was widely used to treat infections in infants. The problem is that when the calcifying tissues that are formed at this stage of development incorporate the chemicals, in the case of teeth, it shows a dark grey color. These are the most difficult to whiten and resistant type of discoloration. In some cases to achieve the best results, the teeth have to be covered with porcelain veneers (Cosmetic Dentistry) to achieve a whiter color.
Also, excessive intake of Fluorides when the patient is young may cause discolorations, this is called Fluorosis.
- Aging: Certain food, drinks or habits may contain pigments that can be incorporated into the teeth. Caffeine, tobacco, red wine, berries, soy, etc. The teeth are very hard and usually impervious to external factors, but over time, the repetitive exposure to these chemicals can cause the discoloration. Some of these discolorations can be resolved well with the whitening process.
- Trauma or Root Canal treatment: You probably heard that Root Canal treated teeth becomes dark. It is not necessary so. The darkness is caused by internal bleeding of the pulp, or nerve of the tooth. The blood penetrates in the dentin and when it breaks down it gives the dark color, which is Iron precipitating from the red blood cells. Trauma is also a possible cause of discoloration, caused, not only from internal bleeding, but also from the tooth defense of internal calcification. These discolorations do not respond well to external Whitening, requiring that the whitening solution be applied internally.
There are several teeth whitening products in the market today. We’ll discuss some of those:
- Tooth paste: Most tooth paste products have in its formula Peroxide, and the manufacturer claims that you’ll have whiter teeth. It may help reduce the degree of discoloration a little, but especially the most resistant types of discoloration, may not. Personally, I don’t like the idea of using Peroxide in your mouth for prolonged periods of time. It may affect the Microflora and there are studies saying that it may increase the risk to develop Cancers, especially for those who already drink alcohol or smoke.
- Whitening Strips or Over the Counter products: These products are more effective than the tooth pastes, but since they are OTC products, the concentration of the Peroxide solution in lower than the one administered at the Dental Office, consequently, have a limited effect.
- Professional Whitening: The most effective and safest method if you want to have whiter teeth.
There are “One Hour” or “Laser” Whitening techniques that, by our experience, most of the initial whiteness conferred by these techniques is transient. The teeth initially show a very intense white color, but most of this color is caused by the dehydration of the enamel. After a day or so the teeth rehydrate and the color is back. Also, some patients may experience a very intense sensitivity.
We usually recommend the use of the plastic trays and we dispense the solution of the right concentration for your case, which depends of the degree and type of discoloration and how sensitive your teeth are. It is a controlled method that we found to be the most effective.
Teeth Whitening is safe and predictable when applied correctly. Some patients may experience some sensitivity, others more intense, but those go away as you discontinue the treatment.