Tooth Whitening Questions
Encinitas, Carlsbad, and San Diego
Could I get good results from a store-bought whitening kit?
A store-bought kit would not give you the dramatic results of a professional treatment. Store-bought kits have generic tooth trays that are not custom-fit to your teeth. That means the whitening gel will not be in close or uniform contact with your tooth surfaces, in order to achieve an effective and even result. Also, the whitening gels are weaker than the professional-strength gels Dr. Walsh-Cole can offer you.
At our office, we have mild, moderate, or strong whitening gel. The strength of the gel can be based on the patient’s sensitivity during treatment. Desensitizing toothpaste is available through our office and can be recommended before and during any tooth whitening procedure.
What does a professional take-home kit contain?
Take-home whitening is an effective, custom way to lighten your teeth in the comfort and convenience of your home.
Our kits contain:
Custom whitening trays that fit closely over your upper and lower teeth
Six whitening gel syringes of incremental concentrations
A shade guide so you can monitor the progress of your whitening success
A plastic tray container to safely store your whitening trays
The custom-made trays are clear and flexible and hold the whitening gel evenly on your teeth, while protecting your gums. We will make sure they are fitting properly and teach you how to use the kit. At any time, you can call us if you have questions or concerns.
How does an in-office treatment work?
This type of whitening is an accelerated approach. Using Zoom! Advanced, we will first prepare your lips and gums by shielding them with a protective barrier. This allows us to use a high concentration of gel for more effective whitening, while your gums are protected. Whitening gel is applied to the teeth and while you are reclined comfortably, we direct the activation Zoom! Advanced light towards your teeth. You can relax and enjoy your selection of music, or you can opt to watch a movie with our movie eyewear.
One of our experienced team members will monitor you throughout the treatment. The light speeds up the whitening action and we typically leave it on for three sessions of 15 minutes. The result is a dramatically brightened smile.
After treatment is done we will give you a Zoom! follow-up kit to take home, as well as custom whitening trays. To help set your new white shade, you will be given a syringe of whitening gel that will be used for the next three nights. Additional whitening gel syringes are available for future touch-ups.
What is KoR Deep Bleaching™?
KoR Deep Bleaching™ is an in-office whitening treatment so effective that it can remove the deep “permanent” discoloration caused by tetracycline. It was developed by Dr. Rod Kurthy, a cosmetic dentist and dental researcher working in New Jersey and California. This method of whitening causes less tooth sensitivity and gives even more dramatic results than the Zoom! 2™ system, which we also offer.
It takes a little longer than Zoom! and requires two visits. Dr. Walsh-Cole will have specialized trays made for your upper and lower teeth. The first visit is a “conditioning visit,” where a gel will be applied to your teeth for 40 minutes. The purpose is to increase your teeth’s ability to absorb oxygen.
Then for two weeks you will be wearing the trays at night with a different type of bleaching gel. It works for longer than the traditional gels and will dramatically whiten your teeth.
The second visit is a one-hour whitening treatment to increase the whiteness even more. For most people, there is no sensitivity at all and even those who have extra-sensitive teeth can use the KoR™ method with little or no problem.
Would my teeth stay white after treatment?
That would depend on your diet and dental hygiene. Food and drink with strong pigments such as red wine, blackberries, blueberries, black or green tea and coffee will stain the tooth enamel. But if you brush and floss daily you can keep the staining to a minimum; and if you come for your regular check-ups and professional cleanings that staining can be removed completely. You can also keep your teeth white by touching up with your custom trays and whitening gel when needed.
Please see our main Tooth Whitening page for more information. You might also want to consider Porcelain Veneers as a way to quickly whiten and transform your smile.
Please visit our Smile Makeover page to see some of our patients.
To learn more about how we can improve your dental health and enhance your smile’s beauty please contact our Encinitas, California office today.