If you’ve been disappointed one too many times by teeth whitening products purchased from a drugstore, you may be ready to try professional teeth whitening. While we can certainly help you with that, it actually may not be the best teeth whitening method for you.
Depending on the condition of your teeth, the type of discoloration you have, and other factors, another teeth whitening method may be a better choice for you. At Family Dental of Spokane Valley, we offer two other cosmetic dental procedures that can whiten your teeth: dental bonding and dental veneers.
To find the right whitening solution for your smile, call us today at 509-850-3217 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Craig Ellsworth. If you’ve already spoken to another dentist about your whitening options, you can get a free second opinion from Dr. Ellsworth.
In the meantime, check out our overview of your three teeth whitening options: professional teeth whitening, veneers, and bonding.
How to Evaluate a Teeth Whitening Method
Two of the biggest factors in your decision will be cost and effectiveness. But you’ll want to evaluate other things too, like:
- Type of Discoloration – Some discoloration responds well to professional teeth whitening, but others will not.
- Your Smile’s Overall Condition – You may want to consider a solution that can also solve some of your other cosmetic problems.
- Your Tolerance for Treatment – To maintain a smile brightened by professional whitening, you’ll need to periodically repeat the treatments. Other options offer a more permanent solution.
Start With Most Conservative Teeth Whitening Method
In many cases we’ll likely recommend you try our most conservative – and least costly – teeth whitening method first. We’ll provide you with professional-strength bleaching gel from respected brand Opalescence. We’ll also make you a set of custom-made whitening trays, using impressions of your teeth. You’ll use the trays and gel at home, at your convenience.
The trays are much easier to use than the messy strips that come with most drugstore products. Your choices include home whitening products that can be used overnight, while you sleep.
Sure, you’ll pay less for a drugstore product. But quite honestly, you’ll get what you pay for! Drugstore products aren’t as effective because they’re formulated with a lower concentration of whitening ingredients.
In addition to being stronger, our professional teeth whitening is:
- Totally Safe – We only use products we trust and have tested ourselves. If you have any questions, we’re a quick phone call away!
- Easier to Use – Your custom-fit trays make it easy to completely cover teeth. They are durable too, so will last a long time with proper use.
Your Discoloration May Not Respond to Whitening
Dr. Ellsworth may suggest another teeth whitening method, if your discoloration doesn’t come from surface staining. While whitening often works well on stains that only affect the outer layer of your teeth, it likely can’t help if the inside of teeth have changed color or darkened.
Teeth with yellow/brown undertones are typically easier to lighten with whitening treatments than those with green/gray tones. Teeth whitening also may not work well if your tooth enamel is thin, which happens as you age.
Two More Teeth Whitening Options: Veneers or Bonding
For more stubborn stains, you may want to consider dental veneers or dental bonding.
Veneers are thin pieces of tooth-colored material that are custom-made for you at a dental lab. We provide the lab with impressions of your teeth and other information to ensure a perfect fit. When we receive your veneers from the lab, Dr. Ellsworth applies them to the front surfaces of your teeth. The whole process can often be completed in just two appointments.
While veneers are more expensive than teeth whitening treaments, the cost difference may not be as much as you think. That’s because veneers will:
- Last a Long Time – Veneers are a more permanent way to address teeth staining. They resist staining and should last at least a decade with proper care. In fact, they can last much longer than that!
- Conceal Other Flaws – In addition to stains, veneers will conceal chips, cracks, gaps, and worn-down teeth.
A less costly option than veneers is a tooth bonding treatment. It involves applying layers of tooth-colored resin to your smile to hide your discoloration. Like veneers, it can cover other imperfections. The treatment works best for minor flaws. A bonding treatment will typically last three to five years.