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Teeth Whitening - Treatment, Procedure And Side Effects

Last Updated: Feb 18, 2023

What is the treatment?

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A perfect smile is a necessity when trying to make a good impression on people. Stained or yellowed teeth can often put a damper on what would be a charming smile. With all the pollution and staining foods that people consume on a day to day basis, staining and yellowing of the teeth have become a common problem. Food like coffee, tea, red wine and even cola have a staining effect on the teeth. Smokers are especially prone to the yellowing of teeth, as are people who consume any tobacco products.

While tooth bleaching has existed for decades, previous bleaching methods were harsh and underdeveloped. They would often cause tooth sensitivity due to corrosion of the enamel and sometimes even lead to other oral or health problems as the chemicals used were not safe. This is why people often have an aversion to getting their teeth whitened and tend to forego the procedure even when recommended by professionals. Fortunately, modern teeth whitening technology, be it bleach or laser, is extremely gentle and only works to remove stains from the teeth.

There are a number of different methods that dentists use to whiten teeth. Tooth bleaching is a popular method and involves putting a bleaching gel on the teeth which remove stains.

How is the treatment done?

A tooth whitening procedure will usually require approximately 30 minutes. You can easily take an hour out of your day to go in for the procedure. If you are going for a common tooth bleaching, the dentist will put a gel on your teeth for 30-40 minutes and then clean it off before you leave. This procedure will take three to five sessions and results will begin to appear after two to three sessions.

If you opt for a laser whitening procedure it will take fewer sessions to achieve the desired result. Depending on whether or not you are opting for a power whitening method or any other accelerated method, it might even take as few as just one session to achieve the desired results. Laser whitening will usually entail that the doctor put a dam on your gums to protect it from the laser. Then, a gel is applied to your teeth, that is activated as the laser is applied to it.

The details of the procedure, as well as the time it takes, will depend on your specific requirements as well as various other factors that include your dental health, the amount of staining and the kind of whitening method you have opted for.

Who is eligible for the treatment? (When is the treatment done?)

Tooth whitening is required for stained and severely yellowed teeth that cannot be remedied with home oral care.

Who is not eligible for the treatment?

You should not undergo a teeth whitening procedure if:

  • You are under the age of 13.
  • You suffer from a gum disease or any disease that affects your oral health
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Are there any side effects?

There are no major side effects that can occur from modern tooth whitening procedures. The most common side effect is temporary sensitivity from consuming cold food or beverages. Other side effects include a sore throat and white patches on gums. These side effects are also temporary and do not persist a few days after the procedure.

What are the post-treatment guidelines?

The post- treatment guidelines include:

  • Brushing your teeth regularly and thoroughly.
  • Using fluoride toothpaste.
  • Avoid sugary and stain-causing foods/drinks as much as possible.
  • Going for regular checkups with your dentist.

How long does it take to recover?

There is no recovery period for this procedure. You can get back to your normal routine right after having a tooth whitening treatment.

What is the price of the treatment in India?

There are a variety of different methods of tooth whitening, each of which can vary in cost depending on various factors. They usually cost between Rs. 1000 and Rs. 150,000 in India.

Are the results of the treatment permanent?

The effects of a professional tooth whitening procedure usually last up to three years. This can vary based on your oral hygiene habits, the place you live and on whether or not you consume sugary foods, coffee, and tobacco.

What are the alternatives to the treatment?

Tooth whitening procedures have various different methods you can opt for. However, if you are looking for an alternative to professional tooth whitening you can try home whitening kits, whitening toothpastes, and tooth whitening gels.

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Written ByDr. Vikram Singh AtwalPCAD,MCID Implant,BDS,Advanced AestheticsDentistry
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