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Why And How To Whiten Your Teeth

Posted on May 3rd, 2016

The toothpaste aisle should not be this confusing.

You would like a whiter smile, but you are not sure which product to get. Should you get the whitening toothpaste with peroxide or the one with baking soda?

Maybe you should just get regular toothpaste (Do they even make that anymore?) and get a whitening mouthrinse. Then again, the store has those white strips, too.

Atlanta West Dentistry wants to make this easier for you. Instead of trying to figure out which of the commercial products might make your teeth a little whiter, just make an appointment for a professional teeth whitening at our dentist office in Marietta, GA.

Understanding Your Tooth Color

Your teeth are not going to remain perfectly, pearly white … unless you take extra steps to keep them as white as possible. Brushing your teeth may help slow the yellowing process, but it’s not going to stop it.

Teeth naturally turn yellow the more that you use them, and the longer you are alive, the more things you will be biting, chewing, and drinking.

Very few things — like water — won’t affect the color of your teeth. Most other things, however, do leave behind small traces on your teeth. Over time, these small particles build on one another to cause your teeth to look yellower and yellower.

Most of the time, this is a gradual process. It’s unlikely you will notice any difference from day to day.

After years of drinking a large coffee every morning, eating pasta once a week, and taco Tuesdays, your teeth will look darker than they did, however.

It may be something you don’t realize from looking in the mirror. It may occur to you when you are looking at old photos. You might start to wonder if something is wrong with your teeth based on the reactions you get when you smile when you meet someone new.

Causing Stains

We have already mentioned some of the culprits that cause your teeth to lose their white, shiny quality, but we will review some the things that create stains more quickly.

  • Coffee — Whether you take you prefer it black or with lots of cream and sugar, coffee is a dark liquid. When it passes over your teeth, some it becomes trapped in the microscopic pits in the enamel of your teeth.
  • Tea — Regardless of the type of tea you prefer or what you put in your tea, it’s still leaving behind tiny particles when your drink it. This is easy to understand if you’ve ever made iced tea.

When you fill any container and add tea bags, the water slowly changes color for a reason. That’s the same reason tea can cause your tea to change colors, too.

  • Soft drinks — Most soft drinks container sweeteners that can damage your teeth and many contain coloring that can speed up the staining process.
  • Sauces — Tomato sauces, soy sauce, pizza sauce … all of these sauces can stain your teeth.

We could go on, but we think you get the idea. If something can stain your shirt, then it can stain your teeth, too.

Removing Stains

All teeth whitening products contain ingredients that make it easier to remove stains from your teeth.

Remember the stained shirt that we mentioned, you wouldn’t wash that in just water, right? You add detergent, and you may even pre-treat a piece of clothing if you have certain kinds of stains to remove. Higher quality detergents will do a better job than lower quality brands.

Likewise, professional teeth whitening products, like KöR and Opalescence, do a much, much better job than the commercial products available in retail stores.

Professional whitening products are more powerful because they have higher concentrations of the whitening ingredients. This is why you can get them only at a dentist office.

If you need fast results, say for a wedding next week, we would recommend one of our in-office treatments.

If you have a little more time or you are whitening for personal reasons, you may want to try our take-home whitening products. When used correctly, you will see results in a few weeks that are superior to anything you can buy in at a grocery store.

For the absolute best results, however, you can use a combination of in-office and take-home treatments.

Let’s See Those Pearly Whites … Again

You can regain your white smile, and Atlanta West Dentistry is happy to help. Call (770) 941-6979 or use our online form to schedule your appointment at our dentist office in Marietta, GA.