We all want a bright smile, and there are quite a lot of different ways to whiten teeth. The many choices can be often confusing, but it pays to know that there are basically only two types of teeth whitening options to choose from at-home products or professional, in-office bleaching.
Regardless of which options you choose, both will contain bleaching agents based on peroxide. Professional, in-office treatment systems contain 15 to 43% peroxide, while at-home whitening products contain between 3 and 20% hydrogen peroxide or carbamide. Consulting with your dentist on the whitening process is the best way to determine what options work best for you, what will yield the best results and discuss any details that you should be aware of.
However, the efficiency of the teeth whitening also lies in the after-care. There are guidelines and post whitening care rules that you should strictly adhere to in order to maximize its impact.
Still not sure how you should proceed after your first teeth whitening treatment? In this post we’re going to break major dos and don’ts you should follow to ensure you’re successfully and safely whitening your smile. At the end of the day, just remember that you can always consult the Dentist in Oakland CA for more specific advice catered to you.
How does teeth whitening work?
After your first consultation, your dentist will have imprints of your teeth done to make into mouth guards. Generally, you have to wait one week before your mouthguards are made and ready to use. After that, you will be back on the dentist chair, being shown how to use your at-home kit. Admittedly, most people believe that they can have a treatment over and done after one visit, but they’re often surprised at how simple and easy to use the at-home whitening kits are.
You simply insert a small amount of whitening gel onto your mouth guards and put them on; usually, dentists recommend just doing the bottom and central six top teeth as they’re the most visible and it means your gel supply won’t run out as quickly, but nobody says you can’t apply bleaching gel on every single tooth. All in all, the mouthguards are both comfortable and straightforward to use.
Typically, you will be told to wear your mouth guards twice a day for two weeks and advised not to munch for one hour after each session, but that can also depend on your kit and needs. (Your dentist is best placed to give you that information). You cannot drink or eat while you’re wearing your mouth guards as this can impact the whole process, so it requires a bit of time management. Experts recommend doing the treatment in the evenings after dinner and just before bedtime as it can be less disruptive to your routine. If you’re a social butterfly and out and about with friends most evenings, then an overnight kit might work wonders for you.
If you’re about to have your teeth whitened, make sure you consider the following dos and don’ts or click here to book an appointment with our specialists.
DO keep your teeth healthy and clean
If you’ve decided to whiten your teeth, then it’s crucial to remember that such products are meant for use in healthy mouths. If you have any build up on your teeth, you won’t get the results you’ve paid for. Brushing and flossing are vital, as well as regular dentist visits. Make time and schedule a dental checkup before you start the treatment so your dentist can spot any tooth decay. If you have cavities, the whitening treatment will not work as the bleach can seep into them, hit your nerve, and cause pain.
DO the whitening treatment well in advance
That’s especially important if you’re preparing for an important event such as a party or wedding. Your dentist will be able to tell you how long the process will take, which can be around 2 to 4 weeks, or even less if you’re accepting it overnight.
DO brush your teeth before wearing your mouth guards will gel
Want your treatment to be as effective as possible? Then make sure you clean off all the remnants of your dinner before wearing your gel. Not only that, but you should also brush your teeth after wearing the mouthguard to remove all the excess bleach.
DO have realistic expectations
The whitening treatment will not make your teeth white in a flash of an eye, but it will definitely lighten your smile by a few shades. The results will depend on each individual and how stained your teeth are in the first place.
DON’T use too much whitening gel onto your mouthguard
Excessive gel can damage your gums.
As you probably know, smoking is the fastest way to diminish teeth witness, so it’s smarter to eliminate this habit if you want to have whiter teeth.
The White Diet: What you can and cannot eat after teeth whitening
What to avoid?
Coffee – it can be difficult to entirely cut out coffee from your life. But if you can’t, you should at least reduce the amount to no more than two cups.
Wine – red wine’s dark colors and acidity make it an enemy for your white smile. While white wine can’t stain your teeth, its acidity will certainly increase your susceptibility to other staining beverages and foods.
Fruit Juices – these are also high in acidity. If you want to keep your smile white, you’d better avoid these drinks.
What can you have?
- Chicken/turkey – light-colored, healthy, and acid-free, chicken and turkey meat is great to eat in general, especially after the treatment.
- Fish – all types of fish are allowed, except for the dark ones.
- Pasta – you can eat pasta as you like, but make sure you avoid colored sources.
- Rice- you can serve it as you want but make sure you avoid colored condiments such as curry or soy sauce.
- White bread – anytime you want. Ideally, you should remove the crust to be on the safe side and don’t hurt your gums.
- Yoghurt – make sure you only consume white yoghurt as colored yoghurt can contribute to stains.
- Bananas – You can snack bananas anytime you want because they pose little risk to your teeth’ colour.