If you’ve been struggling with self-confidence due to the appearance of your smile, LumiSmile® teeth whitening may be just the solution you’re looking for. Even with the best dental care, our teeth can become discolored over time. Tooth discoloration can have a negative impact on your self-image and affect your overall well-being. The LumiSmile® teeth whitening system is a popular, safe, and easy procedure that can tackle tough stains, lightening them or even removing them altogether. Read on as we break down the benefits and give tips for keeping your new smile shining bright.
What causes tooth discoloration?
As dental hygienists, we see a lot of different causes for tooth discoloration. Sometimes, daily habits like eating certain foods or smoking can dull the natural white of your teeth. Red wine, coffee, tea, and soda are some of the biggest culprits in causing teeth to lose their luster. These stains usually respond well to treatment.
Other cases of discoloration can be caused by factors our patients have limited control over — environmental challenges like heavy minerals in your drinking water or too much fluoride. Even medication can cause discoloration in some patients, leaving them feeling like they have to choose between their overall health or their appearance. While these factors can be a bit more complicated to solve with LumiSmile®, we will work with you to create a treatment plan that can help. However your teeth have become discolored, you don’t have to live with a smile that makes you unhappy.
How does the LumiSmile® teeth whitening system work?
LumiSmile® uses 25% hydrogen peroxide whitening gel to transform the appearance of your teeth. Once applied, it lightens enamel and dentin discoloration to give your smile a bright refresh. LumiSmile® won’t whiten things like dental implants, bridgework, or crowns but we are careful to work with you to accommodate that, usually by lightening your teeth to the shade of the implant/crown. If you have plans to get implants in the near future, it’s worth considering a whitening procedure first so you can select your replacements based on your whitest smile. Then you won’t be stuck only able to level up a few shades.
What happens during a LumiSmile® whitening appointment?
LumiSmile® is a straightforward process that begins with a shade-check of your existing teeth — so you’ll have a reference for the amazing results to come. The next step is to prepare you for the whitening process. Even though LumiSmile® whitening only takes about an hour, we like you to be comfortable — it’s not good to spend time in the chair creating a beautiful smile and then leaving too tired or sore to show it off. We equip you with a nifty pair of protective glasses, place a retractor in your mouth to help you keep it open without pain, and use a barrier to protect your gums from the whitening gel. Once you’re all prepped, it’s time to get to work.
The next step in the LumiSmile® whitening process is to apply the whitening gel to your teeth. We apply it carefully to ensure no areas are missed and all areas are uniformly covered. After your teeth are coated, we used a Sapphire PAC light to speed up the time it takes for the whitener to work. The light is approved for use in dental care and is equipped with adjustable settings we can adjust to ensure you are completely comfortable. We repeat this step three times during the procedure. The final step is the moment you’ve been waiting for — the reveal! You’ll look in the mirror and discover a smile up to eight shades brighter than your shade-check at the beginning of the appointment, which is definitely something to, well, smile about. When you’re done admiring the results, we apply a post-treatment gel that minimizes sensitivity and protects your enamel.
Protecting Your Newly Whitened Teeth
Now that you’ve got the smile you’ve been longing for, it’s time to protect your results so they will last as long as possible. We can send you home with a touch-up whitening kit for the occasional lightening job but it’s still important to take preventative measures. Brush your teeth in the morning and evening for at least two minutes and avoid brushing after eating acidic foods, which can weaken your enamel and lead to discoloration. Flossing regularly and cleaning your tongue thoroughly will also help keep your teeth whiter for longer. If you know your discoloration is caused by your routine, like a daily coffee or smoking habit, consider what you can do to cut back and protect those pearly whites. For those circumstances that cannot be helped, like necessary medication, we’re always here to help you maintain your smile.
Stop hiding your smile or avoiding photos because of tooth discoloration. At Ashland Dental and Wellness, we believe that whole-person health includes feeling good about yourself and we want all of our patients to feel confident and happy with their smiles. Call us at 708-755-1333 to get started.