Most of us would like to have brighter smiles. We’re constantly bombarded with billboards and advertisements featuring dazzling pearly whites. If you want to have a more radiant smile, you’ve probably considered whitening your teeth. You can find products to lighten your smile everywhere from the doctor’s office to the grocery store nowadays, but many patients have questions about using them. At our Houston dental practice, Dr. Cindy Flanagan and our dedicated team offer two professional teeth whitening systems to help you safely and effectively enhance your smile. We’re also here to answer all of your questions, which often involves helping you sort out all of the misinformation you’ve received about tooth whitening. In the following blog, we bust some of the most common teeth whitening myths.
“You Can Whiten Crowns”
Restorations like dental crowns and tooth-colored fillings can certainly improve the appearance of your smile, and, when beautifully made, they can even give your grin a lighter look. However, once they’re in place, these prostheses cannot be whitened. In her Prevention article, “10 Tooth-Whitening Myths You Keep Buying Into,” Aviva Patz explains: “fillings, crowns, and veneers, which stain at the margins and dull over time, resist whitening…though permanent porcelain crowns are color fast.” Basically, the bleaching process used to remove stains from natural enamel just doesn’t work on these synthetic materials. Patz points out that this is “why your dentist might recommend a whitening treatment before you get a crown or veneer…if you whiten ahead of time, you can then match the veneer to the new, whiter, brighter shade of your teeth.” If you require a restoration and want to whiten your teeth, Dr. Flanagan can create a customized treatment plan to help you.
“You Can’t Lighten Intrinsic Stains”
There are two types of tooth discoloration: extrinsic stains, which come from the dark particles in food, drinks, and tobacco getting lodged in your enamel, and intrinsic stains, which result from internal, systemic causes. For example, taking certain medications or excessive use of fluoride can cause your teeth to become discolored from the inside out.
For some time, dentists believed that intrinsic stains were impossible to whiten. However, with modern, state-of-the-art teeth whitening treatments, this is no longer the case. Our KöR Advanced Deep Bleaching system can help eliminate both extrinsic and intrinsic stains. If you’ve tried teeth whitening before but are still noticing a gray hue to your teeth, KöR may help you finally enjoy the dazzling smile you’ve been dreaming of.
“Whitening Lasts Forever”
It would be wonderful if this cosmetic treatment could last you a lifetime. However, this simply isn’t the case. Ask the Dentist writes: “the color change is permanent. However, the aging process continues, which means your teeth continue to yellow.” In addition, if you continue drinking red wine, eating dark sauces, and smoking, your teeth will be vulnerable to further staining. For these reasons, Ask the Dentist advises: “touch-ups are needed to maintain the whitening…the custom whitening tray method is the best.” At our dental practice, we offer custom-fitted at-home whitening trays from ZOOM! Whitening, and we’re happy to help you keep your new gorgeous grin white.
Are You Ready for a Brighter Smile?
Dr. Flanagan and our team would love to see you for a consultation to bust more myths and help you decide which teeth whitening treatment is right for you. Contact our Houston dental practice today to find out more and schedule your appointment!