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FAQs - Cosmetic

Teeth whitening toothpastes seem to be popping up everywhere and you've got to wonder if they really work.

 

Whitening toothpastes, like all other toothpastes, contain mild abrasives to remove surface stains. Teeth whitening toothpastes may have additional polishing agents and special chemicals that are more effective against stains than regular toothpastes. While whitening toothpastes can make your teeth appear a little lighter, by getting rid of stains, they do not actuall bleach your teeth.

 

Teeth whitening toothpastes are ideal for people who smoke, drink coffee and tea and eat certain foods that can stain your teeth. Teeth whitening toothpastes are also good to use after you have undergone a teeth whitening procedure to keep surface stains from building up on your teeth.

If you decide to use a teeth whitening toothpaste, be sure that it contains fluoride for extra protection against tooth decay.

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A veneer is a thin shell made out of porcelain or composite material. They are custom made and cemented to the front side of the tooth. A veneer can be used to treat dental conditions such as a slightly crooked tooth, discolored teeth, chipped teeth or they can even be used to cover spaces in between the teeth.

A veneer can be made by the dentist or in a dental laboratory, depending on the materials used and the preference of the dentist.

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Bleaching kits sold in stores stay on your teeth longer than toothpaste and contain stronger bleach. These store-bought products do not come with the added safety of having your dentist monitor any side effects. They also come with a one-size-fits-all tray that holds the bleach and is more likely to leak the chemical into your mouth.

 

Dentists may use products with stronger bleach, but they give patients careful instructions to follow. They are also trained to spot and treat the side effects that patients sometimes report during bleaching. In addition, if a tray is needed to apply the bleach, dentists supply custom-made trays. Because products used by dentists are strong, they tend to produce the best results.

Patients should be aware that the long-term use of whitening or bleaching products may cause tooth sensitivity or tooth abrasion. Please consult with your dentist before using a whitening or bleaching product.

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