By James L. Pyle, DDS
June 10, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Teeth Whitening  

Having a smile which has lost its luster can take a toll on your self-esteem. However, with the rise in popularity of cosmetic dentistry, it is easier than ever to renew your smile into one you love. Teeth whitening is one of the best ways to achieve this rejuvenation. Learn more teeth whitening about teeth whitening with help from your Durham, NC dentist.

What causes teeth staining? 
Your teeth stain one of three ways:

  • Extrinsic: Extrinsic staining usually occurs due to outside elements such as drinking coffee, tea and soda or using tobacco. The extrinsic layer of your teeth includes the outer, white enamel layer.
  • Intrinsic: Intrinsic staining occurs on the inner, yellow-colored dentin layer of your teeth. This type of staining happens when you have too much fluoride exposure or use certain medications like tetracycline, the tooth experiences some kind of trauma or due to other medical conditions.
  • Age-Related: As you age, your teeth age with you. Age-related staining occurs on both the intrinsic and extrinsic layers. Thanks to normal, everyday use, your enamel becomes thin over time. This allows the yellowish dentin to show through.

How does teeth whitening work? 
Teeth whitening uses chemical reactions between your teeth’s stains and the whitening gel itself. These reactions break the bonds which hold the stains’ molecules together, dissipating them and providing a whiter appearance. A professional in-office teeth whitening session can yield dramatic results. A single, hour-long session can lift the color of your teeth up to ten shades. However, everybody is different, meaning that some people require several sessions to reach their desired color. Many Durham patients have touch-up sessions once or twice a year after their initial whitening sessions.

How can I keep my teeth white between sessions? 
The best way to avoid teeth staining and yellowing is to avoid the elements which cause them. If you drink darkly-colored beverages or foods, be sure to brush or at least rinse your mouth with water after consumption. Additionally, try to drink your beverage all in one sitting rather than sipping it throughout the day, cutting down on the time its acids are in contact with your teeth. Brush twice daily for at least two minutes and floss at least once a day. Additionally, see your dentist at least twice a year for regular examinations and cleanings.

A brighter smile could be just a phone call away. For more information on teeth whitening, please contact Dr. James Pyle in Durham, NC. Call (919) 286-9667 to schedule your professional in-office teeth whitening session today!