Are yellowing teeth getting you down? If so, you are not alone! Many patients from across Southern Alaska, including Wasilla and Palmer, are concerned about discolored teeth. They often ask about teeth whitening procedures, as well as products they find at the store.
One of the most common we get questions about is whitening toothpaste. Do they work? Well, yes and no.
How Whitening Toothpastes Work
Whitening toothpastes work by adding chemical and physical agents that can remove stains. Chemical whiteners are limited in strength because they can irritate your gums, and there’s no way to keep toothpaste off your gums. Physical agents work by scraping stains off your teeth. However, these substances can only remove stains that are on the surface of the teeth. This typically results in whitening by roughly one shade.
On the other hand, plenty of Anchorage dentists offer fast in-office teeth whitening procedures that can commonly illuminate your teeth anywhere from three to eight shades. That is quite a difference!
But the limited whitening is only part of the problem with whitening toothpastes. While these abrasive toothpastes are scrubbing the stains off your teeth, they are also scraping off your tooth enamel. Your body can’t replace lost enamel, and over time this causes the white coating on your teeth to thin, which lets the yellowish dentin show through. Not only does this mean that whitening toothpastes make your teeth yellow in a way that whitening can’t fix, it makes your teeth vulnerable to cavities, chips, and cracking.
If you’re looking for a whitening solution at the store, try strips or trays. These aren’t as damaging and work better (though not as good as in-office whitening).
Beyond Teeth Whitening
Once you see the dramatic changes that can happen with in-office whitening, you might realize just how beautiful your smile can be. In addition to discolored teeth, we can fix almost any cosmetic complaint you may have about your smile, including chipped, worn, crooked, and even missing teeth. Using industry-leading cosmetic dentistry procedures such as veneers, crowns, inlays, braces, dental implants, bonding, and gum contouring, the Eagle River dentists at Excellence in Dentistry are helping patients get the outstanding look they desire. Whether you’re looking to restore your youthful smile or create the smile of your dreams, we can help.