At Chicago Loop Dentistry, we understand the impact of a radiant smile. Located in the heart of Chicago, we’re proud to offer comprehensive teeth whitening services as part of our extensive range of cosmetic dentistry solutions.
Teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental procedure designed to remove stains and discoloration, brightening your smile. Over time, teeth can become stained due to various factors such as aging, certain foods and drinks, tobacco use, and certain medications. Our professional teeth whitening service can help restore your smile’s sparkle and enhance your confidence.
During the teeth whitening process, a whitening agent is applied to your teeth. This agent penetrates the enamel and breaks down the stains, resulting in a significantly whiter smile. Rest assured, our team will guide you through the entire process, ensuring you are comfortable and informed at every stage.
Yellow tooth discoloration is one of the most common tooth discoloration types. The appearance of yellow teeth can be due to your enamel wearing down, stains adhering to your teeth, or your teeth not being as clean as you think they are.
Brown tooth discoloration can be more dangerous than yellow discoloration and is something you’ll want to look out for as you get older. While a brown color doesn’t always mean something is critically wrong with your teeth (it could be because of staining), it may point towards a more serious issue. If your teeth start to decay, they may turn a darker yellow or brown color as the surfaces of your teeth are worn down.
You may be thinking, “What? White discoloration– that’s a thing”? White tooth discoloration is what’s known as fluorosis, which happens when you use too much fluoride, whitening products, or whitening toothpaste. It causes little white spots on your teeth to form.
White discoloration may also be noticeable after individuals get braces or retainers removed from their teeth. This is usually due to poor brushing and flossing habits, instead of other factors. With this type of white discoloration, people usually notice white spots in the middle of their teeth where the braces or retainer used to be.
If you’ve ever had a glass of wine, enjoyed some beets, or other highly pigmented foods, you may notice your teeth staining specific colors afterward. The Purple, red, and blue discoloration you may see is not due to your enamel wearing down. Instead, it’s caused by stains that occur for one reason or another.
Black tooth discoloration is the most dangerous type of discoloration there is. If you notice your teeth are black or very dark gray, we recommend that you schedule an appointment with Dr. Mehta at your earliest convenience to stop this discoloration in its tracks.
Black tooth discoloration is usually attributed to tooth decay, which is when bacteria or other substances eat at the surface of your teeth, causing them to rot or layers to be completely etched away. If left untreated, rotten teeth can lead to abscesses or the need to remove the tooth altogether.
Now that you have a better idea about different categories of tooth discoloration, let’s take a look at some of the most common reasons for what may be causing your discoloration. It’s important to remember that even if you take good care of your teeth, they still may be discolored, and that’s okay. Dr. Mehta and her team at Chicago Loop Dentistry are here to help you out!
One of the most common reasons why your teeth may be discolored is improper dental hygiene, especially if you’re younger and don’t have any preexisting health conditions that put you at risk for tooth discoloration. For tips on how to make sure your dental hygiene is top-notch, refer to the section below titled “Things To Do Naturally Whiten Your Teeth and Prevent Further Discoloration”.
Unfortunately, everyone gets older. As time goes on, our body and bodily processes won’t be as strong as they once were. This goes for the condition of our teeth as well. During the aging process, your teeth may become thinner as well as more yellow as your enamel wears off. As much as we’re sure you take good care of your teeth, some things just can’t be helped, and aging teeth are one of those things.
Genetics is another factor that plays a role in how white our teeth are. Some people are simply born with more enamel, less enamel, or naturally whiter teeth. Others may be born with certain health conditions or predisposed genes that determine how yellow or white our teeth are.
Two of these conditions are dentinogenesis imperfecta and amelogenesis imperfecta. Although these conditions are rare, it’s important that you’re aware of them in case you suspect you or someone you know has one.
Dentinogenesis imperfecta is a condition where one’s teeth are discolored (usually a yellow-brown or blue-gray color) and more translucent than normal. People with this condition may also have teeth that are thinner than ‘normal’ teeth, which naturally makes them weaker and more prone to discoloration over time.
Amelogenesis imperfecta is a similar genetic condition affecting tooth growth. People with this condition have smaller teeth, pitted/grooved, or discolored (usually a yellow-brown color). Amelogenesis imperfecta also makes teeth more prone to discoloration, breakage, and greater-than-normal wear.
Similar to genetics causing tooth discoloration, certain diseases and illnesses may cause your teeth to become discolored as well. If you have certain conditions that require radiation or chemotherapy for treatment, chances are your teeth will naturally become discolored even if only by a little bit.
Additionally, if a pregnant mother contracts an illness or gets cavities, that bacteria may be passed onto the baby and cause their teeth to be naturally discolored when they’re born.
Most of the time, these are things that can’t be helped. If you struggle with discolored teeth after being treated for a certain disease, please reach out to Dr. Mehta at Chicago Loop Dentistry. She and her team would love to help you restore your teeth to the pearly whites you want them to be.
Just as much as medications are designed to help people heal and feel better, they can have adverse effects on the body too. Certain dental procedures may also affect the way that teeth are colored, too.
For a long time, it has been known that certain antipsychotic, antihypertensive, antibiotics, and other medications can and do discolor the teeth to be a yellow or brown color. Certain mouthwashes or other prescriptions that children have under the age of 8 can also affect enamel growth, leading to discolored teeth when adult teeth are developed.
Additionally, certain dental procedures may leave teeth with a gray stain or film over them for a while after the procedure is finished. These stains usually go away with time, though.
Aside from poor dental hygiene, the food and drinks we consume play the largest role in the color of our teeth. This is amplified even more if you smoke cigarettes or consume chewing tobacco. The following list details some of the most common food and drink items that are prone to staining teeth and making them discolored:
Another reason that may be causing your tooth discoloration is any trauma or injury your teeth have experienced. Whether your teeth were hit by something, you fell and chipped your teeth, or had another injury, it’s possible to have your teeth discolored as a result of the trauma. Even if they aren’t immediately knocked out or discolored, the affected area can discolor faster or easier than other areas of your mouth.
Last but not least, your teeth may be discolored due to the environment where you spend most of your time. Whether at work or home, if you are consistently in an area that is dusty, dirty, or uses radiation and other light waves, these things may all affect the color of your teeth the longer you’re in them.
We’ve all been there before. You get sick of being unhappy with the color of your teeth and decide to look up quick fixes on the internet. The first article you see reads “3 natural ways to whiten your teeth fast”. It’s natural, so you should be good to go, right? Well, not always. Even if there’s a website claiming your teeth can get whiter after following certain steps for 10 minutes a day, it doesn’t always mean it’s safe for your teeth.
There’s a lot of misinformation on the internet, especially with the rise of social media trends and catchy advertising. Unfortunately, you shouldn’t believe everything you see when it comes to the health of your teeth. This section will talk about what you shouldn’t do and things you should avoid when trying to whiten your teeth or prevent new discoloration from occurring.
While it’s perfectly okay to eat foods that are highly pigmented or acidic every once in a while, prolonged habits of consuming them may lead to further discoloration. If your teeth are discolored and you’re trying to prevent them from getting worse, we recommend limiting the amount of pigmented or acidic foods you consume.
As natural as vinegar and baking soda are, using them on your teeth can result in worse staining the more you use them. Not only do these substances taste bad, but their abrasive properties can wear down and scrub away your enamel, which only reveals the yellow dentin layer below it.
Some natural remedies include scrubbing your teeth with turmeric and oil or other spices to remove stains and whiten your teeth. However, rubbing your teeth with oil and spices does just the opposite. Your teeth may become stained and even more discolored after using these things, especially if you use them on your teeth every day.
If you’re a frequent user of social media and the internet, chances are you’ve probably seen the videos circulating where individuals show a ‘before’ of their teeth and an ‘after’ of their teeth while using a charcoal product. Even though activated charcoal may look cool to some people because of how dark it is, it does more harm than good.
Activated charcoal is extremely abrasive and easily removes the enamel layer of your teeth, revealing the yellowish dentin layer similar to how vinegar and baking soda do. So as much as you may want to use a charcoal scrub or activated-charcoal toothpaste to whiten your teeth, it’s best to stay away from these things.
Now that you know how not to enhance the health of your teeth, you’ll learn about things you can do to prevent further discoloration.
Remember at the dentist’s office as a kid when you got the dreaded question “How often do you brush your teeth”? As much as you may not have liked hearing that as a kid, there is merit to it. The American Dental Association (ADA) suggests that you brush your teeth twice a day (usually day and night) to keep them clean and prevent discoloration, disease, and cavities.
We’ve all seen the commercials- whitening strips, a teeth whitening pen, whitening toothpaste, or other over-the-counter products that promise to whiten your teeth after just one use! But how effective are these things, really? Although they may seem gimmicky, most over-the-counter whiteners are approved by the ADA and are proven to provide whiter teeth to most people who use them.
Over-the-counter kits usually contain carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide, which are both two chemicals that provide a “bleaching” effect to the teeth, effectively removing stains and brightening their look.
Another way to keep your teeth white and prevent them from becoming discolored is to floss once a day and use mouthwash after flossing. This removes any food, plaque, or other things from the surface of your teeth and gums and overall contributes to a healthier smile.
One thing you may not have thought about that helps prevent new tooth discoloration is using straws when you drink dark or staining liquids. Straws prevent the liquid from hitting your teeth, so you don’t even have to worry about staining or discoloration from happening to begin with. Using straws can also be helpful to folks who have sensitive teeth.
Another solution that is guaranteed to whiten your teeth is professional whitening treatments or other cosmetic dentistry. There are many different treatments that dental hygienists and dentists themselves can recommend to you and implement. These options can be one-time treatments, at-home treatments, or in-office treatments.
If you’re interested in purchasing professional whitening treatments for your beautiful smile, consider Chicago Loop Dentistry’s safe, quick, and inexpensive teeth whitening kit! You can read more about this kit in the section below, titled “Try Chicago Loop Dentistry’s Safe, Quick, and Inexpensive Teeth Whitening Kit”.
To go right along with regular brushing, flossing, and mouthwash use, Dr. Mehta recommends that you get routine cleaning performed every 6 months. This not only ensures your teeth are clean with the best technology and products available, but they’re also routinely checked for any cavities, disease, injury, or decay. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
If you haven’t had a check-up in a year or more, that’s more than okay too. Chicago Loop Dentistry strives to provide the best service possible to all people, regardless of when you had your last cleaning.
If you’ve tried what seems like everything to get your teeth white again but you still notice that your teeth continue to get discolored, it may be time to consider a professional teeth whitening procedure or kit. We get it- it sounds daunting, expensive, and may even sound like it hurts. However, with Dr. Mehta’s personally customized teeth bleaching procedure, your teeth will turn into pearly whites in no time!
It’s safe, quick, and inexpensive. All you need to do is let us know at any appointment that you want to whiten your teeth. You have the option to lighten only your upper teeth or both the upper and lower, depending on how much you show when you talk and smile.
Dr. Mehta and her dental hygienists will take molds of your teeth and create customized bleach splints that will be ready for you to pick up in only a day or two. We provide you with a special bleaching agent that you put into the splints. All that’s required of you is a few hours of wear per day, and our special bleaching agent bubbles stains right out of your enamel without altering tooth structure or existing dental work in any way. When your teeth reach the desired brightness, only occasional treatment is needed to maintain your new smile. We’ll want to take “after” photos at your next appointment.
Dental bleaching is used to correct tooth discoloration. Using the latest in bleaching technology, we can offer a safe method for creating a beautiful “brilliant” smile. In cases of extreme tooth discoloration, crowns or veneers may be the only choice, but because of the low cost of bleaching treatments, bleaching is always worth a solid try in most cases.
If you’ve tried teeth whitening kits and aren’t receiving the pearly whites you desire, it may be time to consider veneers. What are veneers? Veneers are cosmetic dental treatments that consist of porcelain or other materials. They’re essentially thin covers that go over the surface of your teeth that instantly make them whiter and the color you desire.
How durable are porcelain veneers? With proper care, porcelain veneers will brighten your smile for well over a decade.
Dr. Mehta will ensure that your veneers are crafted from the highest quality porcelains and are bonded with the most advanced and proven materials available.
Refraining from using your veneers as tools to open and cut things will prolong their life, and if accidental breakage or damage occurs, it is usually possible to replace only the veneer involved.
Our team of experienced dental professionals uses the latest whitening techniques and technologies to ensure you receive the most effective treatment. At Chicago Loop Dentistry, we offer both in-office and take-home teeth whitening options, allowing you to choose the method that best fits your lifestyle and needs.
Our in-office whitening treatment can dramatically brighten your smile in just one visit, while our take-home kits provide the convenience of whitening your teeth at your own pace. Both options are designed to deliver impressive results, with your safety and comfort in mind.
If you’re ready to transform your smile and boost your confidence with our teeth whitening service, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Chicago Loop Dentistry. We’re here to help you achieve the bright, beautiful smile you’ve always desired.
At Chicago Loop Dentistry, we believe in the transformative power of a bright, beautiful smile. We’re dedicated to helping you achieve your dream smile through our top-tier cosmetic dentistry services, including our professional teeth whitening service. Connect with us today and let us light up your smile – we look forward to serving you
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