What to Expect During a Teeth Whitening Session

There’s no doubt that when you have a whiter smile, you show it off more. For some people, it’s an unconscious behavior to hide discolored teeth behind a closed grin. If that sounds like you, it doesn’t have to be. Whitening treatments are everywhere today, so you’re not stuck with stained and yellowed teeth.

Professional whitening services done in dental offices, like at Dr. Lin’s, are the safest, fastest, and most effective treatments. If you want a brighter smile, but you need results fast or are aiming for safety, a teeth whitening session at our office is the way to go.

Our office uses the highest-quality professional-grade ingredients and the safest practices. Since you’re putting whitening agents (also known as chemicals) in your mouth, you want to be able to trust it’s getting done right!

Ready for the teeth whitening service that could change your life? Here’s what you can expect to occur when you go to your appointment.

Before You Schedule a Whitening Treatment

When you are getting prepared for your professional teeth whitening service, it’s an exciting time! There’s no anxiety or worry about pain because these treatments don’t involve any needles or discomfort. You get to sit back, relax, and enjoy the quiet time.

However, the first thing you do have to make sure you get done before scheduling your treatment is a checkup. Your regular dental visit is important so Dr. Lin can make sure your teeth and gums are healthy enough for the whitening agent.

Although the products we use are the safest available, any time you apply a bleaching agent to a problem, it can make it worse. If you have any sensitivity from gum or teeth issues creeping up, it needs to be addressed first.

Some early dental issues don’t even show symptoms. Dr. Lin will check to see if you have any cavities starting, cracks or chips in your teeth, or early-onset gum disease. Any of these conditions, as well as a few others, can be aggravated by a whitening agent.

This concern is also why many experts recommend a professional apply your whitening treatment. Over-the-counter products may be approved by the American Dental Association. But if you’re not careful to use them exactly as directed or you have underlying issues, they can damage your teeth and gums.

During your visit, you’ll have a professional teeth cleaning performed by our hygienist. Any plaque or tartar buildup disappears under the expert care you’ll receive. After that, Dr. Lin will thoroughly examine your oral health and set you on the way to the next step before your whitening treatment.

What to Expect on the Day of Your Service

The great thing about a whitening appointment is that it doesn’t interfere with your day. Aside from the hour or so that you’ll be in our office, you can go about your normal schedule. 

It’s a good idea, however, for you to have something to eat before your visit. Eating softens the enamel on your teeth, so try to finish your meal at least thirty minutes before you get to our office. Brush your teeth as you normally would, and bring something to pass the time if you’d like.

Your Whitening Treatment

At your appointment, you’ll have another professional cleaning, even if you’ve had one recently. The intention behind this is to make sure our whitening agent has a clean slate to work with. Getting rid of all the unhealthy plaque and tartar that may have started to build up since your last cleaning is important.

Your mouth is full of sensitive tissue, from your lips and cheeks to your gums. Any bleaching agent can irritate those tissues, so we use a retractor for safety measures. You’ll have the small piece of equipment placed in your mouth to pull back your lips and make sure the agent doesn’t touch them.

The next step is to have a protective gel layered over your gums to keep them safe from the bleaching agent, too. Once every sensitive area is carefully covered, the whitening agent is then brushed onto your teeth.

The Whitening Process

Whiteners all work the same way, although the ingredients and application process vary. Each whitening agent is applied to your enamel, where it interacts with the layer in your tooth called dentin.

Dentin is the part of your tooth that determines the color. It’s a porous layer that starts out white but can stain over time. The bleaching agent expands these pores and then seeps into the dentin, lightening the color of the tooth.

The thing to be concerned with is that the longer the chemical is on your teeth, the more possibility of damage can occur. In a professional whitening service at Dr. Lin’s office, we take safety precautions to reduce this worry. 

Our state-of-the-art equipment includes a special light that speeds up the process. It encourages the whitening agent to work faster, meaning you have less time with chemicals on your teeth.

Because of the light and the professional-grade products we use, most patients are excited to see a noticeable result after the first treatment. However, not everyone is satisfied with their lighter color right away. 

Depending on the reason for your teeth’s discoloration and the severity, it may take a few visits. Dr. Lin will talk to you ahead of time and let you know what to expect and why.

After Your Whitening Treatment

Professional whitening services are just as easy after they’re over as they were to prepare for! Aside from caution with your meals for the first 48 hours, there’s nothing you have to do differently in your day.

However, the dentin that expanded for your treatment will stay open for about two more days. That means that, like the whitening agent, anything you eat or drink can also get into those pores.

For that reason, you should avoid food and beverages that are known to stain teeth. Dr. Lin will talk to you about these stainers, what to stay away from, and what to eat and drink. 

In addition to your diet, your oral hygiene habits are important, too. If you want your teeth to stay white as long as possible, brush at least twice a day. Floss daily, and use mouthwash. Doing so will keep tartar and plaque from building up and discoloring your gorgeous new smile.

To get started on the path to a whiter, brighter smile, contact us at Dr. Lin’s office today! We’ll have you showing off your fresh and clean pearly whites in no time at all.

“Welcome to our new practice owner Dr. Mona Sidhu and her team of dental specialists! Schedule your next appointment to meet her and her team by calling (510) 945-3647