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Posts for tag: teeth whitening

By Dr. Constance Smith
January 24, 2018
Category: Dental Procedures

Find out how professional teeth whitening is the best way to get a whiter smile fast.teeth whitening

We know that you can turn to DIY remedies from Pinterest and over-the-counter whitening kits from your local drugstore and get minimal results over the course of several weeks. Of course, if you have a major event or special occasion coming up then you just don’t have time to wait for these products to give you those magical results. This is a job for our Jackson, MI, cosmetic dentists, Dr. Constance Smith and Dr. Liskiewicz.

What you might not realize is that tooth enamel is porous, which means that it is ready to drink up all those stain molecules left on your teeth from years of drinking coffee and red wine and consuming dark-colored foods like tomato sauce. While surface stains can be removed during a routine dental cleaning from our Jackson dentist, professional teeth whitening is able to get into the deeper enamel layers to break up stain molecules in a way that even professional cleanings can’t.

“Why can teeth whitening target these molecules?” It’s the whitening agents within the gel that are able to successfully break up these molecules and remove stains from the enamel and dentin layers of your teeth. Teeth whitening will use one of two active ingredients: hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. While either of these agents are found in both professional and over-the-counter whitening products, our in-office system offers a high-quality whitening gel with a higher percentage of the active ingredient, which means that you’ll see more visible results in a shorter time period.

In fact, most patients get the results they want in just a one-hour whitening session. Before your treatment begins, we will perform a thorough cleaning to make sure your smile is free of plaque and tartar before applying the gel. We will also make note of the shade of your smile before treatment thanks to our handy shade guide.

From there, a dental dam is placed to keep your mouth open and reveal your teeth while also protecting your gums and lips from the powerful whitening agents. In a typical whitening session, the gel is applied to the front of your teeth and then left on teeth for up to 15 minutes. Once the 15 minutes are up, we will remove the gel, apply a fresh coat and leave it on for an additional 15 minutes. In most cases, you’ll get three whitening gel applications during your treatment.

After just one session you’ll be able to instantly see the difference. Some smiles can instantly become up to seven shades whiter, while other more serious cases might require another whitening session to get rid of severe or widespread stains.

Are you ready to get in-office teeth whitening in Jackson, MI? If so, call our dental office today to schedule a cosmetic consultation with us. Let’s find out if professional teeth whitening will finally give you those beautiful results you want.

By Dr. Constance Smith
December 14, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures

Stained or yellowed teeth can really drag down your appearance or make you feel self-conscious. Fortunately, there is a quick and easy teeth whiteningsolution to this very common problem. A professional teeth whitening session can boost your smile and make you feel like a million bucks. Find out more about professional teeth whitening with Dr. Constance Smith and Dr. Liskiewicz at Connect, Create, Smile Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Jackson, MI.

Is teeth whitening right for me? 
If you feel as though your yellowed or discolored smile could use a pick-me-up, you could benefit from a professional teeth whitening session. A good candidate for teeth whitening should be over the age of 18 and in generally good dental health with no tooth decay or gum disease. If you have these issues, your dentist will treat them before administering teeth whitening treatments. Unfortunately, dental restorations like veneers, crowns and bridges do not respond to whitening treatments like your natural teeth. If the surrounding natural teeth undergo a whitening treatment, it could leave your smile with an uneven hue.

Professional Whitening Sessions vs. At-Home Kits
While at-home whitening kits found at drug stores can help whiten your smile, they are not as effective as quickly as a professional whitening session. In-office whitening is monitored by your dentist, allowing for the use of heavier and more powerful whitening agents. At-home kits may take weeks or months before providing you with noticeable results while one hour-long whitening session with your dentist could dramatically lift the color of your teeth.

Professional Teeth Whitening in Jackson, MI
Teeth whitening sessions normally last around an hour and do not require any recovery time, allowing patients to go right back to their daily activities after their appointment. While a small percentage of patients do report some teeth sensitivity after treatment, it normally resolves itself within a day or so. Results of your whitening session are immediately visible, but, unfortunately, are not permanent. Most patients see their dentist once or twice a year for touch-up sessions to keep their smiles white.

For more information on professional teeth whitening, please contact Dr. Smith and Dr. Liskiewicz at Connect, Create, Smile Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Jackson, MI. Call (517) 787-7520 to schedule your appointment with your dentist today!

By Constance E. Smith, D.D.S.
October 12, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: teeth whitening  

Do you have stained or discolored teeth? You're not stuck with them! Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic procedures performed today. Dr. Constance E. Smith and her staff are pleased to offer this procedure. Learn what your Jackson family dentist can Teeth Whiteningdo to brighten up your smile.

How does teeth whitening work?
Teeth whitening is done using a bleaching agent, which can be applied in the dental office or at home. If you choose to have the whitening done in the office, your dentist will first protect your lips, gums, and cheeks. Then your dentist will apply a hydrogen peroxide gel to your teeth, which will whiten during your time in the office.

If you'd rather do this at home, your dentist can take a mold of your teeth and create trays for your teeth, then give you a whitening gel. You would wear the gel-filled trays at home, according to your dentist's instructions.

Why should I go to a dentist for teeth whitening?
Teeth whitening products contain varying amounts of bleaching chemicals, which can irritate your mouth if improperly applied. So, it's best to have a professional perform whitening in a dental office. In addition, over-the-counter products aren't as strong as the products your dentist would use, so it also takes more time and more applications to get comparable results.

How long does the whitening last?
Everyone is different; results can last from months to years. You can prolong the whitening by having good dental hygiene and avoiding substances that stain your teeth like wine, tobacco, tea, and coffee.

Is tooth whitening safe?
Not everyone should have their teeth whitened, so your Jackson family dentist will evaluate your case before starting treatment. However, for most people, it's perfectly safe, especially when it's done under a dentist's care.

Does it hurt?
Your teeth may be somewhat sensitive after a whitening treatment, but the sensitivity should be gone within a few days.

What if I have fillings or crowns?
Teeth whitening won't damage fillings or crowns, but their color may not match your newly whitened teeth. Whitening may also affect the bond between any fillings, crowns, or veneers with your natural teeth. Your dentist will consider these factors before starting any teeth whitening procedures.

Ready to get your sparkly whites back? Call your Jackson family dentist at (517) 787-7520 today!

By Constance E. Smith, DDS
February 27, 2015
Category: Dental Procedures

Australian heartthrob Hugh Jackman has won international recognition for his work on stage, screen and television, including his long-running portrayal of Wolverine in the X-Men film series, and his Academy-Award-nominated starring role in Les Miserables. Oh, and did we mention he was named the “sexiest man alive” by People magazine in 2008? So when Jackman once said “I have shocking teeth”… what did he mean?

“[My dentist] looked at my teeth and went, ‘Oh, my God, you've got gray teeth,’” the actor stated. The proposed cure: tooth whitening. But what if the action hero's teeth were brightened too much — would his look still convey his trademark rugged charm? To see how that issue was resolved, let's look a little closer at various methods of tooth whitening.

All Whitening Isn't the Same
Everyone has seen the kind of over-the-counter tooth whitening strips advertised in magazines and sold in drug stores. Most dentists agree that, given enough time, they can work in many cases. But there may be problems, too.

One is that unless you know what's actually causing the darkening, you can't be sure if there is an underlying issue that needs treatment — a root-canal problem, for example. Bleaching a diseased tooth is like painting over a rusty car: it camouflages the problem, but doesn't fix it. That's one reason why, before any whitening treatment is attempted, it's important to have a complete dental examination, with x-rays.

Another is that without professional supervision, it's more difficult to control the degree of whitening you will end up with. For safety reasons, over-the-counter whitening products have the least concentrated bleaching agent, and will probably require weeks of use to produce noticeable results. The next step up — a custom-designed, at-home bleaching kit from our office — will likely produce results twice as fast.

The Professional Advantage
At-home bleaching done under our supervision uses stronger whitening agents with a flexible plastic tray that's custom-made to fit your teeth. It's a cost-effective way to achieve several shades of whitening in a relatively short time. Plus, with the advantage of our experience and guidance, you can get excellent results safely and efficiently.

If you want the fastest and most controllable whitening, however, in-office whitening treatments are the best way to go. According to one study, using the most concentrated whiteners in a safe clinical setting produced a six-shade improvement in just three office visits! This would have required a week or more of at-home bleaching, or upwards of 16 daily applications of the over-the-counter whitening products!

In-office whitening also offers the greatest degree of control over the outcome. That's why it was the method Hugh Jackman chose for his treatments. By adjusting the concentration of the bleaching solution and the treatment time, Jackman's dentist made sure his teeth were pleasingly light — but still looked completely natural. And in our office, we can do the same for you.

So whether you're looking for a dazzlingly bright smile or a more subtle enhancement, the best way to start is to call our office for a consultation. For more information, see the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Important Teeth Whitening Questions Answered” and “Teeth Whitening.”

By Constance E. Smith, DDS
December 04, 2014
Category: Dental Procedures

Christie Brinkley's world-famous smile has graced the covers of countless magazines for over 30 years. In fact, in her own words from an interview with Dear Doctor magazine, the supermodel said, “I think my smile was really my passport to success in the modeling industry.” And while most of her smile's appeal comes naturally, Christie does give it a boost with good oral hygiene, regular dental checkups and tooth whitening. As Christie says, “When it comes to teeth, keep it as natural as possible. Do not go overboard on whitening. You want your teeth to compliment your face…your friends should not be required to wear sunglasses when you smile!”

Aside from some potential minor side effects such as tooth sensitivity, whitening teeth through bleaching is a relatively inexpensive way to brighten your smile conservatively and successfully. There are three common methods, as described below:

  • An external or vital approach where “vital” (living) teeth are bleached through direct contact to the tooth's surface.
  • An internal or non-vital approach where the tooth is whitened from the inside during a root canal treatment.
  • A combination approach in which both internal and external bleaching techniques are used.

But what causes teeth to become discolored?

Tooth discoloration can be caused by a traumatic blow to your teeth resulting in nerve tissue (pulp) death. However, there can be many other causes: consuming or using products that stain the teeth such as coffee, tea, cola, tobacco products and red wine, to name just a few. Aging is another factor, as it results in changes in the mineral structure of the tooth as the enamel, the outermost layer, loses its beautiful and youthful translucency. Other causes include exposure to high levels of fluoride; tetracycline, an antibiotic, administered during childhood; inherited developmental disorders and jaundice in childhood; and tooth decay.

The good news is that we routinely brighten smiles through tooth whitening. To learn more about brightening your smile, continue reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Teeth Whitening.” Or if you are ready to have your teeth professionally whitened, contact us today to schedule an appointment so that we can conduct a thorough examination and discuss your whitening treatment options. And if you want to read the entire feature article on Christie Brinkley, continue reading “The Secret Behind Christie Brinkley's Supermodel Smile.”