How to Get and Keep Your Teeth Their Whitest

Nothing enhances your appearance like white teeth.

Nothing makes such an immediate and dramatic change in your appearance as teeth whitening. But you won’t transform dull, yellow teeth into a brilliant, white smile when you use the products available in your local pharmacy.

Here at Robert F. Wilcox, DMD, we take great pleasure in helping you get your most radiant smile with a professional whitening that produces optimal results in minimal time. Here’s how you can get and keep your whitest teeth.

Get your whitest teeth with professional care

No matter how convenient it is to whiten your teeth at home, there’s just no way around the fact that you can’t get the same results there as you do at the dental office. The products we use are significantly stronger than the teeth whiteners available at your local pharmacy.

Although home teeth-whitening products use the same type of bleaching agent, they’re much less concentrated than the active ingredients used in professional products. A strong bleach can easily irritate the soft tissues in your mouth, so their use is limited to dentists. When we apply a a whitener, we carefully protect your gums, cheeks, and tongue so they don’t touch the bleach.

How much difference is there between at-home and in-office whitening?

Over-the-counter whitening strips and gels are applied twice daily for 14 days. The instructions for many whitening rinses say to use it diligently for about three months. Your results? In 2-12 weeks, your teeth will go one or two shades lighter.

Here in the office, your teeth can get up to eight shades lighter in just 45 minutes because we use Philips Zoom WhiteSpeed®.

Zoom for excellent and fast whitening

When you come in for professional teeth whitening, we’ll give you a checkup to be sure you don’t have any cavities or problems that shouldn’t be exposed to the whitener. Then we assess the shade of your teeth and work with you to determine how light you want to go.

The last step before we start the whitening procedure is to take an impression of your teeth so we can provide customized trays for you to use at home.

When it’s time to start whitening your teeth, we protect soft tissues and put a tray containing the Zoom whitening gel over your teeth. Then we place the exclusive Zoom LED light over your mouth to accelerate the process. During your visit, you have three 15-minute sessions under the light. Then you emerge with your whitest smile ever.

Maintain whitening with professional products at home

Another benefit of using Zoom is that you go home with a custom-made tray that fits perfectly over your teeth without spillover onto your soft tissues.

We also give you some Philips Zoom DayWhite® or NiteWhite® to use in the tray so you can maintain your results at home. When you notice staining, just use one of the whiteners for two weeks to restore your smile.

Tips to prevent future staining

You can prevent or at least slow down teeth staining by following a few tips:

Brush right away after eating

If you brush and floss right after eating foods that stain your teeth, you’ll quickly remove the pigments before they seep into your enamel and discolor your teeth. You’ll also remove plaque, which tends to attract stains.

The top culprits responsible for teeth staining are foods and beverages with dark colors, such as coffee, tea, red wine, cranberry juice, and berries.

Avoid acidic foods and beverages

Some foods are naturally acidic, while acids are added to other products like sodas to give them some zip. Frequent exposure to acids gradually erodes your tooth enamel, creating areas that are very susceptible to staining.

If an acidic product also contains dark pigments, it’s a double threat to your teeth. Cola, fruit juice, tomato juice, and vinegar are a few examples of high-acid products.

Drink your coffee, tea, or cola quickly

You don’t need to gulp it down, but remember that the longer your teeth are exposed to the pigment, the more likely they are to stain. It helps if you use a straw because less of the stain-causing fluid comes into contact with your teeth.

You can also minimize the impact by swishing your mouth with water, or ideally, brushing, when you finish your beverage.

When your smile looks dull and yellow, call Robert F. Wilcox, DMD, or book an appointment online. We can quickly refresh your smile and whiten your teeth in one short visit.

You Might Also Enjoy...

What’s Involved in a Smile Makeover?

A smile makeover is more than just whitening your teeth. It’s a dental process aimed at improving the look and health of your teeth and gums and may involve one or more specialized treatments.

Solutions for a Chipped Tooth

A chipped tooth isn’t just a cosmetic issue. A break in your tooth makes it more susceptible to bacterial invasion and infection. The jagged edges can also injure your tongue and inner cheek. Fixing it will protect your tooth and keep your mouth safe.

A Parent’s Guide to Kids’ Dental Care

Healthy dental habits start early and will set your child up for a lifetime of happy smiles. February is National Children's Dental Health Month and the perfect opportunity to review what every parent should know about pediatric dental care.