Brushing and flossing are everyday ways to keep your teeth bright, white and healthy. Still, if you might feel like your smile is lacking some sparkle or is more yellow than it used to be, you’re not alone.
Several reasons why teeth turn yellow:
Food and Drink
Coffee, tea and red wine are some major staining culprits.
Two chemicals found in tobacco create stubborn stains: Tar and nicotine. Tar is naturally dark. Nicotine is colorless until it’s mixed with oxygen. Then, it turns into a yellowish, surface-staining substance.
Below the hard, white outer shell of your teeth called enamel is a softer area called dentin. Over time, the outer enamel layer gets thinner with brushing and more of the yellowish dentin shows through.
How does it work?
Whitening products contain one of two tooth bleaches (hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide). These bleaches break stains into smaller pieces, which make the color less concentrated and your teeth brighter.
Two options for teeth whitening
In-Office Bleaching – This procedure is called chair-side bleaching and usually requires only one office visit. The dentist will apply either a protective gel to your gums or a rubber shield to protect your gums. Bleach is then applied to the teeth. The bleach will activate with no UV light necessary. This procedure takes an hour to complete.
At-Home Bleaching – Peroxide-containing whiteners actually bleach the tooth enamel. They typically come in a gel and are placed in a tray that fits on your teeth. The concentration of the bleaching agent is lower than what your dentist would use in the office so it is safe to use at home. The dental staff with go over home instructions.