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Improving the appearance of your smile may be even easier than you realize.

Teeth Whitening in Reston, VA

As you age, it is nearly impossible for you to avoid stained and darkened teeth. Even if you avoid tobacco, coffee, and other stain causing substances, common foods and beverageteeth whitening reston smilezones cause your teeth to darken. Even though it is a natural part of aging, dentistry today offers solutions to restore your smile’s beauty.

If you have a special occasion such as a wedding, vacation, or class reunion in your near future, you probably want to look your best. Perhaps you are in the dating scene or looking for a new job. There are no shortage of reasons that our patients choose to improve the appearance of their smiles and we are here to help them achieve their brightest smile.

Fast, Effective & Affordable Teeth Whitening

There are many causes for teeth looking dingy or yellow. The main culprits are genetics, age and the food you eat. There are several ways to correct this problem:

What Are Some of the Causes Tooth Staining?

Age: There is a direct correlation between tooth color and age. Over the years, teeth darken as a result of wear and tear and stain accumulation. In your twenties, the teeth begin to show a yellow cast. By your forties, the yellow gives way to brown and whitening may be needed. By the fifties, teeth have absorbed stubborn stains which can be difficult, but not impossible, to remove.

Starting color: It’s in the genes. We are all born with the tooth color that our parents gave us. This can range from yellow-brownish to greenish-grey that intensifies over time. Some people just have whiter teeth than others all their life. Fortunately, you can do something about the color of your teeth.

Translucency and thinness: Another genetic factor is tooth translucency and thickness. Teeth that are opaque and thick have an advantage: they appear lighter in color, show more sparkle and are responsive to whitening treatments.

Eating habits: This is the one cause that you can control. Frequently consuming red wine, coffee, tea, cola, carrots, oranges, and other deeply-colored beverages and foods cause staining over the years. Acidic foods such as citrus fruits and vinegar contribute to enamel erosion. As a result, the surface becomes more transparent and a dingy, yellow color over time.

Smoking habits: This reason is very self-evident. Tar and nicotine leave brownish deposits which slowly soak into the tooth structure and cause intrinsic discoloration.

Drugs and chemicals: Tetracycline usage during tooth formation produces dark grey or brown ribbon stains which are very difficult to remove.

Grinding: Most frequently caused by stress, teeth grinding (gnashing, bruxing, etc.) can add to micro-cracking in the teeth and can cause the biting edges to darken.

Teeth Whitening Options

There are three major teeth whitening options are available to you today. All three rely on varying concentrations of peroxide and varying application techniques over a period of time. Application time and costs are other factors to consider.

In-Office Whitening
For the most significant color change in a short period of time, in-office whitening is the best option. This treatment involves the carefully controlled use of a relatively high-concentration peroxide gel, applied to the teeth by a dentist or trained technician after the gums have been protected with a paint-on rubber dam.

Generally, the peroxide remains on the teeth for several 15 to 20 minute intervals that add up to an hour. Stubborn staining may need a return for additional sessions, or may be required to continue with a home-use whitening system.

Professionally Dispensed Take-Home Whitening Kits
This type of treatment take-home whitening kits can produce the excellent results over the long haul. Take-home kits incorporate an easy-to-use lower-concentration peroxide gel that remains on the teeth for an hour or longer. The gel is applied to the teeth using custom-made bleaching trays that resemble mouth guards. The downside is finding the time to apply the treatment and the longer, more frequent application.

Over-the-Counter Whitening
The cheapest option is over-the-counter bleaching kits. These have much lower concentration of bleaching gel than that of the professionally dispensed take-home whiteners. The gel is applied to the teeth via one-size-fits-all whitening strips or paint-on applicators. In many cases this may only whiten a few of the front teeth and results take many applications over several weeks.

Selecting the Best Treatment For You
Which treatment should you choose? The answer really depends on the condition of your teeth and the quality of results that you want to achieve. Over-the-counter whitening may not give you the brightness that you desire as fast as you want. A good place to start is to come in for a  whitening consultation where we can discuss the merits of your options.

Over-the-counter teeth whitening systems simply do not provide the same results as a professional teeth whitening system used under the supervision of a dentist. The results vary and the store bought systems often cause more sensitivity and discomfort because they fit loosely, slip off, and allow the whitening gel to leak.

If you would like more details about teeth whitening cost or learn about other questions, please contact or call us at  (703) 662-1625 

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