Teeth Whitening and Oil Pulling

smiling girls with champagne glasses

Cosmetic dental trends pop up every few years, some better than others. One that has gotten a lot of opinions behind it lately is a unique way to whiten the teeth. Patients are excited about this inexpensive and healthy way to brighten the smile… but does it work?

Oil pulling involves wishing coconut oil in your mouth through your teeth. Instructions on the internet say that this should be done for half an hour every day to see results, which include eliminating bacteria, lessening sensitivity, and of course, whitening the teeth.

It is important to know that the American Dental Association has declared that they have not found any evidence that coconut oil pulling has any positive effect in any of these areas. In fact, it will be completely ineffective, at best. At worst, it causes an upset stomach and diarrhea.

Our whitening dentist in Los Angeles recommends a professional treatment for those looking to eliminate extrinsic dental stains and brighten their smile. There are several different types of treatments, meaning patients can work with our dentist to determine the best type for them. Patients will see results right away, sometimes up to eight shades brighter.

Teeth Whitening and Oil Pulling

How Teeth Whitening Works

portraits of pretty teen sistersWhen choosing products from the store or from your dentist to get whiter and brighter teeth, you may wonder how these products can get the job done. While there are many different types of products, they generally work to whiten the teeth in one of two ways. These are through abrasion or lightening.

Many products that you can buy over the counter will work by the abrasion method. Small particles scrub away surface stains to reduce discoloration caused by foods, beverages, and lifestyle choices. However, abrasive materials can only do so much and may actually be damaging to the teeth if used improperly over time.

Gels, trays, and strips may use peroxide to help remove stains from beneath the surface of the teeth for actual whitening effects. The peroxide can work inside of the teeth to lift away particles that cause discoloration.

Your dental care provider can offer products that are much stronger than those that you can purchase at the store. This can help you to achieve greater results in a shorter time frame. Because of the risk of irritation to gums and sensitivity to the teeth, it is important that a qualified dentist be the one to use these teeth whitening treatments.

How Teeth Whitening Works

Why You Might Feel Pain After Teeth Whitening

0429

Many patients feel some level of pain after having their teeth whitened. While not all patients will experience this sensitivity following a teeth-whitening procedure, it is not uncommon for patients to experience varying levels of pain. The increased sensitivity may trigger a painful response to hot or cold, or sweet or sour. Excess air exposure can also cause pain in some individuals.

Tooth sensitivity is more likely to occur with a whitening method that involves bleaching rather than non-bleach options. The bleaching agent can enter through your enamel and get down into the inner areas of the teeth where the nerves are located. Most individuals only experience the pain from this sensitivity for a day or so following the procedure.

An expert in teeth whitening in Los Angeles will most likely provide you with a screening to determine if you are a good candidate for the bleaching process. If so and you experience pain, over-the-counter pain relievers can help. Additionally, your dental care provider may recommend using a toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth before and after your whitening treatments for greater comfort. If you experience pain following teeth whitening, let your dentist know.

Why You Might Feel Pain After Teeth Whitening

Different Methods for Teeth Whitening

Senior Woman With Adult Daughter Relaxing On Sofa At Home

When you are looking for a treatment option for whitening your teeth, you have a variety of choices to select from. Over-the-counter products can be an economical option if you only have some surface staining. However, if your teeth are discolored beneath the surface enamel, you may want to choose a stronger treatment option.

Over-the-counter products, such as toothpastes, often use chemicals or abrasive materials to break up and scrub away stains that are on the surface of your teeth. This can be stains from nicotine use or form dark beverages or staining foods. Other products, such as rinses, may use optical brighteners that help to make your teeth appear whiter.

When discoloration or yellowing goes below the surface, you may need a bleaching product. Over-the-counter choices include gels, strips, and trays with a low concentration of peroxide bleaching agents. The bleach can get beneath your enamel to whiten teeth below the surface.

Zoom whitening is done in the dentist’s office in about an hour. Your teeth may look several shades lighter after just one treatment. Teeth that are stained or yellow react better to whitening treatments, while those that are brownish or grayish may not be improved.

Different Methods for Teeth Whitening

What You Should Know About Zoom Whitening

Young business woman smiling

Certain foods, drinks, and lifestyle habits can lead to brown and yellowed teeth. These include red sauces, berries, coffee, tea, and smoking tobacco. This can lead to self-consciousness about your smile, and a look that you don’t take pride in. Fortunately, cosmetic dentistry offers teeth whitening treatment in order to get your smile back to sparling and bright.

Zoom is one type of whitening treatment. Impressive effects are possible due to a unique formula and process. The material contains hydrogen peroxide, carbamide peroxide, amorphous calcium phosphate, and potassium nitrate. These materials provide bleaching intensity, enamel protection, and even comfort.

Our Houston cosmetic dentist will use a barrier around the mouth to protect the soft tissues, such as the gums and the lips. The Zoom gel is applied and left on the teeth for fifteen minutes at a time. The ingredients are activated by a special Zoom light, so the peroxide can take effect. This is done for three cycles of fifteen minutes.

If you are a candidate for regular teeth whitening, you are likely also able to get Zoom whitening. Those with severely sensitive teeth should address this issue first before whitening treatment, as the material can make it worse for a few days.

What You Should Know About Zoom Whitening

How Often Can You Have Your Teeth Whitened?

0325.jpg

Reports vary, but most whitening dentists trust you to whiten once a year chairside, with touchups on your own in between. If you are using exclusively at-home products, it is generally accepted that you can use them safely once a day—but only for two weeks at a time.

Our expert in teeth whitening in Northridge always recommends chairside service, since the chemicals are stronger and you can get many shades of brightness in one session. However, if you are on a budget or just prefer the DIY aspect of over-the-counter products, you may see some positive results on your own. Just remember, hydrogen peroxide can be extremely detrimental to your enamel if used incorrectly.

If you drink lots of coffee, you may need to whiten more often than someone who exclusively drinks water or clears. If you have problems with discoloring, you should schedule a dental exam and cleaning before making your next whitening appointment. Clean teeth always whiten better.

You can tell you are overwhitening if you start to have symptoms like increased tooth sensitivity or burning in your gums. If these occur, cease whitening treatments immediately and contact your Northridge cosmetic dentist.

How Often Can You Have Your Teeth Whitened?

Teeth Whitening Options

Senior Woman With Adult Daughter Relaxing On Sofa At Home

White teeth are fresh, youthful and attractive, but many people start noticing stains caused by foods and lifestyle habits, which can keep them from feeling confident about their smiles. If your smile is dull or yellow, our Santa Clara cosmetic dentist offers a variety of whitening options to brighten and renew it.

Whitening kits are one option. These kits include a custom-made mouth tray that slips over your teeth and professional-strength whitening gel. Unlike over-the-counter whitening systems, professional whitening kits are made to fit comfortably and eliminate the risks of ill-fitting trays, such as gum irritation and uneven whitening. The professional gel works quickly to reach deep-down stains and bleach them for a brighter smile in days rather than weeks.

In-office whitening can be another option. We apply in-office whitening directly to your teeth and activate the gel using a special light. This allows it to penetrate quickly and deeply into the structure of the tooth to break up the stains without causing any damage. By the time you leave our office, your teeth will be visibly brighter.

If you don’t like the color of your teeth, you might be a candidate for teeth whitening. Call our office today to schedule your appointment with our expert in teeth whitening in Santa Clara.

Teeth Whitening Options