Teeth Whitening – Three Options to a Brighter Smile

Seriously, is there a better accessory to that glowing skin that we are all blessed with every summer than a perfectly white smile? I say no, but if you said “six-pack abs” I wouldn’t disagree.

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Really though a perfectly white smile is attainable with the technology that is readily available to ordinary people, like you and me.  Celebrities, other rich guys and their trophy wives are no longer the only people that can enjoy teeth that are NOT stained by years of coffee, wine, and tobacco. You can, too!

There are three types of whitening that you should consider: in-office, professional teeth whitening, at-home whitening trays from the dentist, and teeth whitening strips.

Option 1: In-office teeth whitening. If you are getting ready for a photo shoot, a wedding, a vacation, or any other milestone event the only way to go is an in-office professional teeth whitening at the dentist. You are looking at a $500-$700 bill but the results are instant and will continue to get better over the course of the next two weeks.

Option 2: Take-Home Teeth Whitening Trays. Have an event coming up in a month that you are preparing for? I mean really preparing, like, have your outfit purchased, hair appointment made, car rental scheduled and guaranteed prepared. If so, then take-home bleach trays from the dentist are an awesome option. They come at a significantly lower cost than in-office bleaching and can be used for as long as you want, provided that your teeth don’t shift. Your dentist will make an impression of your teeth to create the trays and they should be ready within 24 hours. Your teeth will reach the maximum whiteness after approximately two weeks.

The bleach that you will use at home has a lower concentration of hydrogen peroxide. You can purchase bleach from your dentist, dental assistant, or hygienist anytime that you want. Bleach trays are also a good idea for those who dropped a big payment on the in-office bleaching and who would like to maintain their white smile for years.

Option 3: Teeth Whitening strips.  Just want whiter teeth but are in no rush? Guess what? Those whitening strips work wonders at removing surface stains for anyone. Smoker? Coffee drinker? Wino? Soda pop lover? You are in luck! Whitening strips cost anywhere between $35-$50 for a two-to-four week supply. Read the instructions carefully for how long and frequently you should wear the strips. Some teeth whitening strips requiring wearing them two times a day for 14 days straight while others are less strict, and also less effective. Teeth whitening strips are also really effective at maintaining a white smile.

Who shouldn’t buy in to teeth whitening: those with veneers, tetracycline staining, or dead teeth. There is nothing any dentist can do to make your teeth whiter. See a dentist near you to visit your options.

No teeth whitening toothpaste or magic teeth whitening light will replace regular dental visits. One might be surprised at the amount of surface stains a simple teeth cleaning will remove.

Get your tan on, folks! And take along a white smile and some sunscreen.

Affordable Teeth Whitening

Affordable Teeth Whitening in Sacramento

Q & A with the Dental Hygienist: Eight Ways to a Healthier Smile

Cosmetic Dentist Sacramento

1. What’s the biggest problem that you see with patients who come in terms of oral hygiene?

Most patients do not like to floss and think that it is no big deal.

2. How often should I brush and floss?

In an ideal world you should floss after every meal or snack. But, at least twice a day at morning and at night when that is not possible. The best time to loss is at night if morning is not possible because you do not want to leave remnants of food in between teeth to rot.

3. What are the benefits of flossing regularly?

Healthy gums, helps keep the teeth’s foundation of bone level, no bleeding, fresh breath, good check-ups, less cavities, less money to be spent on treatment because teeth are healthy, improves overall health of the body because the bacteria content that can cause heart problems is significantly decreased, decreased chance of bacteria between teeth being passed from mother to unborn child which leads to low-term newborns.

4. What are the dangers of not flossing on a regular basis?

I just mentioned that bacteria found in plaque can be passed from expectant mothers to their fetus. But there are studies that show a strong link between periodontal disease and heart disease. Not to mention that not flossing can lead to the loss of your teeth which could mean periodontal surgery and that costs money.

5. What is a deep cleaning and why would I have to get one?

A deep cleaning involves scraping the crown and root of the tooth to get rid of built up calculus and debris. Someone would need one if there are deep pockets between the gums and teeth and there is calculus present on the roots of the teeth.

6. What percentage of new patients that you see need a deep cleaning? Is it expensive?

Approximately 30-40% of the new patients that I see a month need a deep cleaning. It is expensive. But, have normal cleanings on a regular basis will eliminate the need for this type of invasive cleaning.

7. Why is flossing painful for patients? Will it always be painful?

Flossing is only painful for patients who have swollen gums, periodontal disease, or who only floss sometimes. Healthy gums do not hurt when flossed unless one is flossing incorrectly. Your hygienist can show you how to floss correctly.

8. Any other tips or products that you have for patients?

For patients who don’t like to floss with the string I highly recommend the Reach Flosser, it has a big handle so you don’t have to stick your hand in your mouth. At $3 a piece it is really affordable. The Air Flosser is a new device that can be used to floss. It costs about $70. Things like waters picks are good at removing plaque but does not replace flossing.

I Hate Flossing! Part II

A former flossing procrastinator turned flossing advocate; why to floss, how to floss, and the dangers of not flossing.

Sacramento DentistDid you know that if you lose five or more teeth to gum disease your odds at having a heart attack increase by 26%? If you are predetermined to have heart disease or diabetes you might want to think twice about flossing. Studies definitely show a strong link between poor oral health and heart disease.

Okay, well, I didn’t know this before. I was one of those “sometimes” flossers. You know what I’m talking about. When the dentist asked me how often I flossed my response was a sheepish “sometimes”. Then, I realized that my paternal grandmother died from heart disease. To add insult to injury, my father received a quadruple bypass at 46 and I lost an uncle to diabetes. Keep in mind that at that time it had been a few years since my last dentist appointment. Like many people it really hurt to floss my teeth and it was uncomfortable. I really didn’t want to do it. Really.

I guess you could say that skies parted one day when I stumbled upon some reading material reminding me that I was predisposed to horrible health issues (my grandmother’s heart disease, my dad’s clogged arteries, my uncle’s diabetes) and that not flossing could come back to haunt me with a vengeance. Now I’m a flossing advocator. And I put down the french fries. Win-win.

Now, working in a dental office provides me with more of an affinity towards taking care of my teeth. And all the compliments I get on my pretty teeth are just icing on the cake.  I promise that I am a modest person. I am! But I constantly receive compliments on my teeth. People comment on how straight they are to how white they are (thanks for braces mom and dad!). It’s those compliments that make me take pride in my teeth.

Think about it, when you work hard for your toned body and people take notice it only makes you work harder, right? My teeth are the same thing to me. That’s why I floss.

Everyone hates to floss. I hate to floss. But at the end of the day I’m healthier for it. You will be, too. Did you know that even the girls in the office hate to floss? That’s two Registered Dental Hygienists, four dental assistants!

Top 5 Reasons We Hate to Floss!

  1. It’s uncomfortable to stick whole hand in mouth
  2. “It’s gross!”
  3. Food flies around
  4. When floss gets stuck in the teeth
  5. Messes up lipstick

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Best Sacramento Dentist!

Cosmetic Dentist Sacramento

Dr. Hoang Truong

Welcome to Gateway Oaks Family Dentistry of Sacramento. Home of Dr. Hoang Truong, The Best Sacramento Dentist, and her extraordinary staff!

Our Services Include:

Cosmetic Dentistry (i.e., veneers, bridges, inlays/onlays)
Sedation Dentistry
Teeth Whitening
Extractions
Root Canal (endodontics)

 

Dr. Truong is a family dentist with a comprehensive dental facility based in Sacramento. Our care is patient-focused. No pushy sales people just good dentistry. Dr. Truong educates and trains herself and her staff rigorously to provide her patients with the very best care as well as cutting-edge technology. Dr. Truong and the Gateway Oaks Family Dentistry staff follows strict safety procedures.

Why is Dr. Truong so great? She has the smallest hands in Sacramento! Small hands means maximum comfort for her patients.