Archive for the Teeth Whitening Category

Tooth Whitening

Posted in Cosmetic, Dental, Teeth Whitening with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 10, 2010 by dukeslc
 
survey by the ADA, Crest, and Oral B tells us that a person’s smile is the most appealing feature over eyes, hair, and body. You may recall a similar survey by the AACD  that showed a great smile makes a person seem more intelligent and attractive. So it’s not news, its true. 
 
The easiest way to enhance your smile is to whiten your teeth. This simple procedure can take years of staining off teeth and can immediately increase the youthfulness of many patients!
Here is an article about tooth whitening from the ADA.  It might answer some questions you have about whitening.

What should you ask your dentist?

You may want to start by speaking with your dentist. He or she can tell you whether whitening procedures would be effective for you. Whiteners may not correct all types of discoloration. For example, yellow-ish hued teeth will probably bleach well, brownish-colored teeth may bleach less well, and grayish-hued teeth may not bleach well at all. Likewise, bleaching may not enhance your smile if you have had bonding or tooth-colored fillings placed in your front teeth. The whitener will not effect the color of these materials, and they will stand out in your newly whitened smile. In these cases, you may want to investigate other options, like porcelain veneers or dental bonding.
 
What is in-office whitening?
 
If you are a candidate for bleaching, your dentist may suggest a procedure that can be done in his or her office. This procedure is called chairside bleaching and may require more than one office visit. Each visit may take from 30 minutes to one hour.
During chairside bleaching, the dentist will apply either a protective gel to your gums or a rubber shield to protect the oral soft tissues. A bleaching agent is then applied to the teeth, and a special light may be used to enhance the action of the agent. Lasers have been used during tooth whitening procedures to enhance the action of the whitening agent.
What are at-home whitening and products?

There are several types of products available for use at home, which can either be dispensed by your dentist or purchased over-the-counter.

Bleaching solutions. These products contain peroxide(s), which actually bleach the tooth enamel. These products typically rely on percent carbamide peroxide as the bleaching agent, carbamide peroxide comes in several different concentrations (10%, 16%, 22%).

Peroxide-containing whiteners typically come in a gel and are placed in a mouthguard. Usage regimens vary. Some products are used for about twice a day for 2 weeks, and others are intended for overnight use for 1-2 weeks. If you obtain the bleaching solution from your dentist, he or she can make a custom-fitted mouthguard for you that will fit your teeth precisely. Currently, only dentist-dispensed home-use 10% carbamide peroxide tray-applied gels carry the ADA Seal.

You also may want to speak with your dentist should any side effects become bothersome. For example, teeth can become sensitive during the period when you are using the bleaching solution. In many cases, this sensitivity is temporary and should lessen once the treatment is finished. Some people also experience soft tissue irritation—either from a tray that doesn’t fit properly or from solution that may come in contact with the tissues. If you have concerns about such side effects, you should discuss them with your dentist.

Toothpastes. All toothpastes help remove surface stain through the action of mild abrasives. “Whitening” toothpastes in the ADA Seal of Acceptance program have special chemical or polishing agents that provide additional stain removal effectiveness. Unlike bleaches, these ADA Accepted products do not alter the intrinsic color of teeth.

This month ONLY we are offering $49 tooth whitening kits that include whitening gel and custom bleach trays. Check out our website or call our Salt Lake City Dental office today for an appointment! 801-355-2202

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Benefits of Invisalign Vs. Traditional Braces

Posted in Cosmetic, Dental, Invisalign, Teeth Whitening with tags , , , , , , , on July 15, 2010 by dukeslc

Almost everyone has had or seen the Traditional metal braces used widely by Orthodontists.  Most people remember the horrible grade school nicknames like “metal-mouth” or “brace-face.”  An adult with metal braces can receive odd looks or teasing comments as well.  With today’s technology the dental community has welcomed Invisalign braces with open arms.  Their almost complete invisibility has allowed teenagers to wear braces without the humiliating psychological and social effects.  As well as provided adults the ability to wear braces in many social, business, and professional settings.  The following are some simple pros and cons of Traditional braces versus Invisalign braces.

Oral Hygiene and Tooth Decay

Traditional braces are placed directly on the tooth and can have various attachments such as metal bars, small elastics, springs, and bands.  These various pieces of traditional braces may catch or hold food and make flossing extremely difficult.  Food caught in braces can also cause the patient to have bad breath and can require special cleaning tools that may add to the cost of the braces.  People may also be limited to WHAT they can eat.  Most are advised to avoid such things as corn on the cob or biting an apple to prevent a metal bracket coming off or bending the metal wire.

If the braces are not thoroughly cleaned on a daily basis, patients can experience decalcification and/or tooth decay.  This is often a problem with patients due to the fact that both cause discoloration of tooth enamel and may require tooth whitening or dental fillings.  These can be bothersome if they are on the front teeth and can range from mild to severe depending on the oral hygiene of the patient.

Invisalign aligners are removable and allow for normal eating, brushing, and flossing while in treatment.  In our practice, we have seen a marked decrease in the amount of dental decay due to this simple feature.  It is required that the aligners are worn for at least 20 hours per day, allowing 4 hours for regular eating and cleaning without the retainers.  The aligners are not made to be worn while eating and thus will not cause a patient to avoid eating any type of food.

Comfort

Traditional braces can be painful due to the sharp or pointy edges of the brackets or wires.  Bracket wax is often recommended to avoid sores or cuts on the inside of the cheeks or lips.  These can decrease over time as the patient’s tissues “toughen up” or become accustomed to the metal braces.

Invisalign aligners have smooth, comfortable edges and do not cause tissue irritation in nearly all patients. Invisalign aligners also don’t require any extra materials or time when wearing them.

Length of Treatment

Traditional Braces treatment varies based on the severity of the case.  Patients with severe crowding, rotated teeth, or teeth that cannot erupt into the mouth due to lack of space will have a much longer treatment time compared to those with minor to moderate crowding.  Typical length of time is an average of 2 years.

Invisalign braces are slightly different.  The length of treatment is based on the number of trays the patient will need to wear in order to achieve the straight smile they desire.  Each tray is worn for 2 weeks and then replaced with the next set of trays worn for 2 weeks, and so forth.  Depending on the type of tooth crowding, Invisalign will decide how many trays it will take to move the teeth, via computer technology.  Simple cases are typically 4 to 6 months in length.  Severe cases of crowding can extend up to 12 months or more.  Average length of time is typically 10 to 12 months for Invisalign treatment.

Other Benefits of Invisalign

Invisalign provides the dental office a computer simulation of the patient’s alignment that the patient is able to view, approve of, or change based on the desired final results.  The visual progression of the treatment allows patients to see the before and after of their treatment, as well as educates the patient of the entire process.  The ability to view the final result also increases the motivation of the patient to properly follow instructions and wear the aligners as recommended.

Invisalign aligners can also be used as whitening trays during treatment.  This provides all our patient’s the ability to synchronize the whitening and straightening of their teeth for a perfect smile at the end of treatment.  The cosmetic benefits Invisalign aligners offer are astounding!

Invisalign aligners can be used as a retainer at the end of treatment.  The last aligner is used to perfect the treatment and is recommended to be kept and used as a retainer once treatment is completed.  The clear aligner is much more user-friendly than the traditional retainer with a metal wire across the front of the teeth.

We are proud to offer Invisalign to all our patients and welcome new patients interested to schedule a FREE Invisalign Consultation.  We offer various financing options based on each patient’s treatment and custom limitations.  Please call our Salt Lake City Invisalign Office at 801-355-2202 and check out our website to learn more about our office and excellent staff. We look forward to meeting you!

Salt Lake City Invisalign Dentist

Posted in Dental, Invisalign, Teeth Whitening with tags , , , , , , on June 21, 2010 by dukeslc

What is Invisalign?

Invisalign is a series of clear, removable teeth aligners that dentists use as an alternative to the traditional metal braces. In the majority of orthodontic cases, Invisalign is the treatment of choice due to the comfort, user-friendly advantages, and cosmetic appearance. We are proud to offer all of our patients the best technology and care in our Salt Lake City Invisalign dental office.

What are the Advantages?

§         The greatest advantage of the treatment is the cosmetic appearance. The aligners are completely transparent and made of clear, hard plastic. This makes the method particularly popular among adults who want to straighten their teeth without the look of traditional metal braces. Invisalign for Teens has also been created to help teens straighten their teeth without their peers ever even knowing!

§         In addition to the benefits of invisibility, our patients have found the aligners more comfortable and user-friendly than metal braces. There are no metal brackets to cut your lips or cheeks and the aligners do not irritate gums. Due to the fact that the aligners can be removed and cleaned, unlike metal braces which routinely catch food and gum in the brackets.

§         The hygienic benefits are excellent and the chance of tooth decay is much lower in comparison to traditional braces. The aligners must be worn for 20 hours a day, allowing time to remove them while eating, brushing, and flossing your teeth. With traditional braces, demineralization or tooth decay occurs in 50% of patients. The metal wires also prevent dental x-rays from being taken and tooth decay is usually not caught or noticed until after the braces are removed. The Invisalign aligners are removed while eating and patients are told to brush and floss their teeth before returning the aligners to their mouth.

§         Computerized treatment planning is an excellent way of checking the proper alignment of the teeth and customizing the finished product to the patient’s unique desires. The patient is brought into the office to review, critique, and agree to the treatment as it is shown online to the Dentist.

§         Due to the advanced nature of Invisalign technology, the orthodontic treatment is typically quicker than traditional braces. The average length of time a patient is in treatment is 12 months. The final aligner is kept as a final retainer which the patient can keep for the rest of their life and wear at night to help prevent the teeth from shifting after treatment.

§         The aligners can be used as bleach trays to whiten teeth. The custom aligners are very similar to bleach trays and can double as bleach trays to prevent an added cost. We offer all of our Invisalign patients teeth whitening products so that they have perfectly white teeth at the end of their treatment!

Are there any disadvantages?

§         Because the aligners are removable, they do have the potential to get lost. The good news is that Invisalign stores all treatments in their database and we are able to request a single tray be remade to replace the lost aligner. 

§         Another potential disadvantage is that the trays MUST be worn no less than 20 hours per day. If a patient is not consistent with their wear, the trays will not have their intended effect and the patient will struggle to achieve their optimal smile.

§         If a patient suffers from grinding their teeth, the aligners have the potential to become damaged before their 2-week use is up.  If a person has severe grinding habits, other options will need to be discussed before attempting the use of Invisalign treatment.

Our Salt Lake City Invisalign practice is located downtown with beautiful views of Salt Lake City and easily accessed from I-15.  We are proud to be one of a few Utah Invisalign providers and offer FREE CONSULTATIONS to all who would like to explore their options. Call our office today or visit our website and let us help you achieve the smile you desire through the dentistry you deserve.

Whiter Teeth!

Posted in Teeth Whitening on October 27, 2008 by dukeslc

Here’s an interesting article about whiter teeth.

The Way to Whiter Teeth

Take your choppers from dull to dazzling and give yourself something to smile about.

By the Editors of Women’s Health

If you’ve toyed with the idea of whitening your teeth but haven’t actually done the deed, consider this: “Since teeth naturally yellow as we age, whitening them will automatically make you look younger,” says Kim Harms, D.D.S., a practicing dentist and a spokesperson for the American Dental Association. What’s more, a 2008 Columbia University study found that women with healthier-looking teeth earn more than those with less sparkling grins. Do you need any more reasons to whiten up?

How whiteners work

All bleaching methods use peroxide—whether in gel, strip, or liquid form—to dissolve surface stains, explains Debra Glassman, D.D.S., a cosmetic dentist in New York City. Teeth surfaces are made up of thousands of tiny dentinal tubules—hollow structures stacked horizontally, like thin straws. They’re extremely porous and absorb pigments from food and drink. (Anything that can stain a white T-shirt can discolor your teeth, Glassman says.) Peroxide bubbles into the tubules and lightens those pigments.

Before you bleach

A first-timer should always consult her dentist before trying any tooth whitener, even an over-the-counter product, because not all teeth react to whitening the same way. Some types of dental work (like caps, crowns, and veneers) don’t take to lightening because peroxide can’t penetrate them. Stains caused by antibiotics, like tetracycline, are also tricky, because they can occur in the layers inside the tooth, which brighteners can’t reach. Your dentist will be able to advise you about the best method for you.

If you go to a pro

The whitening agents dentists use are up to three times more powerful than at-home versions, so you’ll see results faster than if you go solo. If you’re looking for a dramatic, fast solution, consider power whitening: First, a protective rubber guard or barrier gel is placed over your gums to help avoid possible sensitivity to peroxide. Then the teeth are coated with a bleaching agent and a light is aimed at them to activate the ingredients. The procedure takes about an hour, and costs $500 to $700.

A cheaper (but slower) option: Your dentist can custom-fit you with plastic dental trays, kind of like retainers, which you fill with a peroxide gel and wear at home. You could see brighter teeth within a few days, though some people need up to four weeks to see results. Oh yeah, and it’ll cost you $250 to $400.

No-tech tricks: If you’d rather pass on the peroxide, check out these other options to whiten your smile.

Bring on the baking soda

The refrigerator deodorizer also removes discoloration on your teeth. The abrasive particles polish the surface while a chemical reaction between baking soda and water lightens stains, says Jonathan B. Levine, a cosmetic dentist in New York City. (Warning: You can damage your enamel with the scrubbing, so don’t do it more than once a week.) Just dip your toothbrush in the soda, or simply switch to a toothpaste that contains baking soda, such as Arm & Hammer Complete Care Toothpaste ($4 for 6 oz, drugstore.com).

Feel the crunch

“Foods that are high in cellulose—a strong starchlike compound found in celery, carrots, and apples—act as natural abrasives, cleansing teeth and removing surface stains naturally,” says Jeff Golub-Evans, D.D.S., a cosmetic dentist in New York City. And greens such as spinach, broccoli, and lettuce contain mineral compounds that form a film over the teeth, so pigments from other foods can’t stain.

Be a little shady

Want to make your teeth look fashionably white—without the work? “Stick with blue-based red and pink lipsticks or clothes in dark colors,” says Pia Lieb, D.D.S., a cosmetic dentist in New York City. Warm colors (yellow, orange, brown, warm shades of red) worn close to your mouth will only bring out the yellow in your teeth.