Teeth Whitening – Home vs Professional

Dental procedures, whether essential, or done for cosmetic reasons, can be very expensive. Whilst A-list movie stars and entertainers can afford cosmetic dentistry running into thousands of pounds, other people have to explore more cost-effective ways of making the best of the teeth they have. This is why, over the last decade, there has been an explosion in the demand for teeth whitening and teeth whitening products. But how do the different options available compare?

Home Treatments

There is a range of teeth whitening products that can be used at home without dental supervision. These include, whitening rinses, whitening toothpaste and gel strips, all of which bring results only after prolonged use. More expensive kits, such as whitening trays, mirror techniques used by dentists. The trays are filled with whitening solution and attached to the teeth. The trays have to be worn for a specified period each day for several weeks and are reported to give good results.

Dentist Supervised Treatment

Treatments used by dentists are based on whitening trays, however, unlike those for home use, a mould is made of the persons teeth so that the trays fit comfortably without the irritation and chaffing sometimes associated with do-it-yourself kits. The whitening chemical used by dentists (carbon peroxide or hydrogen based peroxide) is stronger than in solutions designed for home use. The treatment is usually carried out over one to four visits lasting a couple of hours each before teeth are lighter by 4-8 shades.

Accelerated Treatment

For the fastest results the teeth are exposed to halogen light during the whitening process. This is the most expensive option, but depending on the severity and type of staining, an 8 shade improvement is achievable in only one or two treatments lasting an hour each.

The Advantage Of Using A Dentist

Teeth whitening is not as straightforward as it might seem. The chemical used is effectively a type of bleach and should be used with caution, particularly where there is gum sensitivity. Teeth can become stained for many reasons and a dentist will advise on how best to remove the staining, carry out treatment while protecting gums and other dental work, like crowns and implants, and make sure treatment is not taken too far. Using the services of a dentist is much quicker than applying home methods, is safer and less messy.

 

What Are Dental Veneers?

Porcelain veneers are used to help recreate the natural look of teeth. The veneers are constructed from small but robust porcelain pieces, which gives strength and resilience that is very similar to a tooth’s natural enamel. Dental veneers are often chosen by patients that want to make slight positional, shape size, or colour changes.

What Exactly Are Dental Veneers?

Laminated porcelain veneers consist of a compilation of a number of thin ceramic layers. These have been designed to replace the original tooth enamel and an adhesive coating. The dental veneer is applied after a small amount of the natural tooth enamel has been removed. This is usually no more than a millimetre but is necessary to create space for the dental veneer to fit. The end result will put back all of the natural functions of the tooth, at the same time creating an appearance which is much better than the original tooth.

The bond that exists between the original tooth and the porcelain veneer is vital. This is because it provides not only the desired ‘look,’ but also the strength for the mouth to function normally. To obtain this effect, light-sensitive resin is put between the veneer and the original tooth, and quickly hardened using a specialist curing light.

The Uses Of Dental Veneers

Fitting dental veneers can be done to help with teeth that are in poor condition or discoloured. They are the ideal solution for patients that have discolouration problems, which have not responded well to bleaching or whitening. Veneers are also perfect for compromised tooth positions, gaps, or fractures.

 The Benefits Of Dental Veneers

Because veneers are sculptured individually for every patient, it is impossible to tell the difference between the natural tooth and the fitted veneer. The veneer has advantages over nature, as it has been designed to be stain resistant. The difference between a veneer and crown is that the tooth is almost kept intact. The treatment is not reversible because a portion of the tooth has been removed. However, new veneers can be fitted and adjustments carried out.

 The Cost Of Porcelain Veneers In The UK

The price for have a porcelain veneer fitted is variable and will be between £ 450 and £ 850. No-brand veneers may be fitted for as little as £300 upwards. A cosmetic dentist may well charge up to £2000 per tooth for a fitting.