As some of the top rated doctors in Bergen County, Passaic County, Bogota and Totowa, New Jersey, Bogota Dental Center offers a wide array of cosmetic dental services, including chair-side teeth whitening for stained or discolored teeth.
Tooth whitening isn't actually necessary for your dental health, but it can make a big difference in the appearance of your smile. Teeth that are stained, yellowed or discolored can make you look older and much less attractive, no matter how careful you are about your dental care. Tooth whitening is a cosmetic procedure that can make you want to smile again.
As we age, the outer layer of enamel become thinner from normal wear. This allows the underlayer, a yellowish substance called dentin, to show through. Compounds in tea, coffee and red wine called chromogens often stain teeth, as does tobacco in any form. Some medications (especially an antibiotic called tetracycline), radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and injuries can also cause stained teeth.
All tooth whitening products contain hydrogen or carbamide peroxide, which bleach and lighten stains. You have the option of at-home whitening products like toothpaste, gels, and strips, although these only remove surface stains. Your dentist can recommend an at-home treatment, but chair-side bleaching uses stronger concentrations of whitening agents and is usually much more effective. Lasers or special lights may also be used in chairside treatments to enhance the effect of whitening.
If the whitener gets through the outer layer of enamel into the dentin, it may temporarily cause increased tooth sensitivity. Too-frequent use of at-home whiteners may damage the gums or tooth enamel. Bleaching treatments don't work for all conditions. While yellowed teeth usually respond to bleaching, gray tones are less likely to be affected. Deep stains from medications or injuries may not respond to whitening treatments. If you plant to have veneers or other dental procedures done, you should wait to have your teeth whitened until after the work is finished. Implants, crowns, and veneers don't respond to whitening treatments.