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Published: June 29, 2021

What to Expect During a Teeth Whitening Session

Did you know that one of the most contagious things you can spread is a smile? 

Yes, it’s almost impossible to smile at someone and not receive one in return. But when your teeth are discolored, it’s less likely that you’ll share your grin with other people. Since smiles have a way of turning a bad day around, you never know who yours will impact.

If the only thing stopping you from spreading smiles is your yellowed or stained teeth, the good news is that you can easily fix that! 

At Bay Star Dental, our professional teeth whitening services are fast and effective. You can be on your way to spreading something good!

So now that you’re ready to see what life is like with a dazzling smile to show off, what should you expect during your session? Read on to find out!

How to Prepare for Your Whitening Session

Although a professional whitening treatment at Bay Star Dental is easy and painless, it helps you to prepare yourself if you know what to expect. You don’t have to do too much ahead of time, and we do all the work while you sit back and relax!

There are three things you need to make sure you’ve done before your appointment, though.

Get a Checkup

First, schedule and go to your regular checkup first. Most dental offices won’t schedule a whitening treatment without an annual exam. This is because we need to fix any problems that could be irritated by the whitening agent and procedure.

Since it’s a professional treatment with the highest-grade, safest equipment, and products, it’s less likely to cause you problems. But if you have sensitive teeth and gums, those aren’t issues you can ignore until they go away.

Take Care of Any Problems

Sensitivity in your mouth means there’s an underlying issue that could become serious if it’s left alone. It’s usually a sign of a chip or crack in a tooth, a cavity, or gum disease.

Any whitening product can irritate your mouth if you aren’t careful to follow the directions. You also need to choose high-quality whiteners. However, if you have a problem, a chemical bleaching agent is most likely going to make it worse, no matter how safe the product is.

At your checkup, your dentist will make sure your gums and teeth are healthy enough to handle the whitening treatment. If not, we’ll make a treatment plan to take care of the issue, then circle back around to get you the lighter teeth you’ve been wanting!

Prepare for Your Appointment

The only thing you’ll need to do before your treatment once you’ve had your exam and been cleared to go is eat before your visit. Try to have something small at least thirty minutes before your appointment, then brush and floss your teeth.

You’ll be with us for at least an hour, on average. We want you to be comfortable, not starving! When you eat, the enamel on your teeth softens, though. That’s why it’s important to not eat right before you come to see us.

What a Whitening Treatment Looks Like

Most professional whitening treatments have similar procedures to them. At Bay Star Dental, for example, we start you with a professional cleaning from our trained hygienists. The cleanings are necessary in order to get all the plaque, tartar, and other buildups off your enamel. That way, we can whiten your teeth using a fresh, clean surface.

Your safety and comfort are our priority. Our procedures are designed to ensure that minimal irritation occurs, and we start out by using a retractor to protect your mouth. The whitening agent could irritate the sensitive tissue in your gums and lips, and to prevent this, the retractor keeps them away from the bleach.

The next protective step is to brush a layer of protectant over your gums before we apply the whitening gel. This keeps the bleach from spreading to the gums.

How the Gel Works

Your teeth are made of multiple layers. The one responsible for the color of the enamel is called “dentin.” The goal of a whitening agent is to enter the dentin through expanded pores and lighten the current shade.

All whitening products have this same goal. But if you don’t use a whitening agent made with safe, high-quality ingredients, this is the dangerous part. The longer the product sits on your teeth, the more it can cause damage.

For that reason, professional treatments with a special light are important. This light shines on your teeth and lets the bleaching agent get into the dentin faster. Because it’s more effective, you get quicker results. 

The time it takes for a whitening product to work is essential to look at. The less contact with the chemicals involved, the better, because there’s a smaller chance for the bleaching agent to irritate your mouth. 

Inferior whitening products may not require you to keep the bleach on for a long time, but the steps need to be repeated frequently. This is just as harmful, if not more so.

The treatment takes about an hour, and most patients notice great results after the first session! 

When Your Whitening Session is Over

Aside from your diet for the first two days, there isn’t anything special you have to do after a professional whitening service. Your dentist will talk to you about what you should and shouldn’t eat and drink. The choice is yours, but avoiding foods and beverages that are known to stain will keep your teeth whiter longer.

Your oral hygiene habits are important, too. Brushing twice a day (or more), flossing daily, and using mouthwash will keep the plaque and tartar from building up on your enamel again. Good habits also prevent staining.

Before you leave, we’ll make sure you know exactly how to keep your newly white teeth dazzling for as long as possible. With regular checkups and preventative care, as well as occasional whitening touchups, you can spread your contagious smile everywhere!

Contact our office at Bay Star Dental to get the process started. We’re ready to answer your questions and get you scheduled for your checkup. Your whiter, lighter smile is just a few steps away, and it starts with calling us today!

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