How long does it take to Whiten My Teeth?

As dentists, one of the most common questions we get is how can I whiten my teeth without spending tons of money? In order to answer that question, you first have to understand options for whitening. Improving the color of your teeth can be as simple as at home whitening or as complex as veneers. It is important before beginning your whitening process to understand the pros and cons of each of these treatments and if you are a good candidate. 

Whiten My Teeth: Let’s talk Bleaching

The number of products on the market available for whitening can be overwhelming when beginning your research. It is important to discuss your bleaching goals with your dentist to understand what treatment will work best for you. When talking about bleaching you have two main options, in-office whitening or take-home whitening.  

  • In-Office Whitening is great for same-day results. It will typically involve an hour long appointment at your dental office where they will use a strong whitening gel that will brighten your teeth and give you instant results. It is important to note that you will still need to do at-home bleaching after your in office treatment to maintain and further brighten your teeth. In-office whitening is great for when you have a big event coming up quickly or you just don’t want to wait for results.
  • Take-Home Whitening is a great and affordable option for patients. There are many types and you are probably most familiar with Crest White Strips. These over-the-counter options can work well for patients but the results will not last as long or be as dramatic as a stronger bleaching tray that you can get from your dentist. Your dentist can make you custom trays and provide you with a stronger whitening material than you can buy at the store. Usually in 10 days you will see your final result.

Tips & Tricks to Maintain Your White Smile

It is important to note that after you whiten your teeth you will need to maintain them…

  • You will want to avoid things like coffee, tea and red wine as these things will stain your teeth.
  • You may also notice that during your whitening process, your teeth may become sensitive. There is no need to worry, this sensitivity is only temporary.
  • Finally talk with your dentist about tooth whitening prior to buying any take-home kit. If your teeth have a grey or purple shade to them, whitening may not work at all. Whitening works best for teeth that have yellowed.
  • If whitening will not work for you, your dentist can discuss other treatment options to improve the shade of your teeth.  

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You don’t need to wait for a special event before getting the smile of your dreams, schedule your consultation today! Dr. Luff has years of experience and specializes in smile makeovers.

Whiten My Teeth: FAQ

  • When our tooth enamel grows thin, it slowly exposes the dentin, giving it a yellowish color. It’s not uncommon to notice your teeth growing yellow as you grow older. If you find some of your teeth growing white while other parts are turning yellow after whitening, it might be a sign that you’ve got thin tooth enamel.
  • Sensitive teeth, also known as dentinal hypersensitivity, can develop in patients who have undergone teeth whitening. The sensitivity is the result of the whitening process itself. The whitening chemicals can enter dentin tubules, which are microscopic channels in the enamel that lead to the nerves.
  • If sensitivity does occur use oral analgesics like ibuprofen (Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol), and desensitizing toothpastes like Sensodyne or Colgate Sensitive. If sensitivity is still severe, discontinue the whitening and seek professional advice from your dentist.
  • This is crucial to protecting whitening results because the teeth are typically more porous and vulnerable to staining in the first couple days after treatment. After this 48-hour period, coffee and wine may be enjoyed and whitening results can be maintained as long as steps are taken to protect the teeth.
  • Since each patient recovers at his or her own unique rate, we suggest trying to avoid wine and coffee for two weeks, just to be safe. If this is particularly difficult, we advise patients to drink these beverages through a straw for two weeks, to minimize contact with the tooth enamel.

Tips to keep your teeth white and bright after whitening

  1. Rinse your mouth immediately after drinking or eating
  2. Drink plenty of water throughout the day
  3. Don’t smoke or use tobacco
  4. Avoid common staining beverages, such as wine, coffee, or tea
  5. Use a straw when drinking acidic beverages

Luff Dental Keeps Your Smile Healthy & Beautiful 

If you want a brighter smile quickly and effectively, professional teeth-whitening may be right for you. The procedure involves a professional-grade whitening technique that gives you highly lifelike results in minutes. If you are looking for a more affordable option you can perform yourself, at-home whitening trays are a great option. We can custom-design your set of whitening trays that fit the unique shape of your mouth. If you have questions or concerns about your your smile, please give us a call at 816-875-3391 or request an appointment online with Dr. Luff.

Work with Dr. Luff and her team to find the most effective solution for your smile! We are always accepting new patients in the Lee’s Summit, MO and surrounding area who are ready to improve the health of their teeth, their confidence and smile! Please call Luff Dental at (816) 875-3391 to schedule your appointment.