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How can I get a bright smile?

Q: I want a bright, sparkling smile that makes me look younger and revitalized? What will help me?

A:Then Tooth Whitening is for you

What Is Bleaching?

Bleaching of vital teeth is a simple, non-invasive procedure that whitens your existing teeth making them look cleaner, fresher and indeed more alive. Who should do it?

Almost anyone whose teeth are in the yellow to yellow-brown range [they bleach the best]

Extrinsic stains due to beverages, smoking tobacco [provided they are done away with], and some due to medications respond best.

Grayish white and very unevenly marked, mottled teeth respond poorly Intrinsic stains and genetic disorders of he teeth may need veneers/laminates or dentine bonding.

Those wishing to look better particularly before marriage or for professionals in the public eye e.g.: Models, actors, TV anchors etc.

What are the methods?

There are three:

A] In-office
B] At-home bleaching
C] Use of whitening toothpastes

What are the advantages and disadvantages of each?

In-office bleaching is a simple approximately one-hour chairside procedure that involves the application of a bleaching material on the front upper and lower 10-12 teeth[based on smile width] on the outer surfaces after a protective shield is applied to your oral tissues. A bleaching arc or laser light is often used to hasten and deepen the bleaching effect

After 2-3 such applications of 20 minutes each and in immediate succession a shade upgrade of 2-8 [upwards] can be appreciated.

The disadvantages are:

A] It may not act all [in a very small percentage of cases].
b] A mild to moderate transient sensitivity may be felt.
C] An allergic response [very rare] may be elicited.
D] Gum irritation due to the bleach may last a few hours leaving no residual effects. However your oral health care professional is competent enough to handle any of the above eventualities.

At-Home Bleaching involves the use of trays made by your dentist and a self-application of a lower concentrate of a bleaching10-12% car amide peroxide] that need to be used over a period of time [7-14 days].The advantages are a lowered cost but compliance and lack of supervision to ensure uniformity may sometimes pose a challenge.

Whitening toothpastes are commercial, over- the-counter products that are available for a mild very transient effect [as they contain very low concentrates of bleaching gels due to regulatory reasons]. Follow-up visits with your dentist and use of a whitening toothpaste after in-office bleaching helps in maintenance. Remember: Brushing twice a day with toothpaste [preferably fluoridated unless otherwise contraindicated] is still the gold standard of prevention.

For detailed information read the topic on 'Teething' on our web site http://doctor.ndtv.com/ under the 'A-Z Topics' section
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