Whether they’ve collected stains from coffee, red wine, or even tomato sauce, millions of people have smiles that they wish were a little bit brighter. Fortunately, there are quite a few ways that a good cosmetic dentist can do that for you.
If you’re looking to invest in whiter teeth, you have to make a choice: should you get teeth whitening or veneers? Here’s a guide that can tell you what you need to know to make that decision.
What is Teeth Whitening?
Teeth whitening does one thing, but it does it well. Your dentist can whiten your teeth in two ways: in-office or at home. For an in-office whitening treatment, your dentist will apply a bleaching solution to your teeth, wait a few minutes, then wipe it off. They’ll do this until you have a perfectly white smile, all within a single appointment!
Take-home treatments tend to involve a plastic tray that you pour the bleaching solution into and then place on your teeth. The solution is significantly weaker than in-office, so it’ll take about 1-2 weeks to see the same results.
What are Veneers?
Contrasting with teeth whitening, veneers can fix a myriad of problems with one simple treatment. Your dentist will remove a thin sliver of your enamel and replace it with a small porcelain shell designed to emulate a natural tooth.
You can pick the color of these veneers, meaning that in addition to covering chips and cracks, they can give you a perfectly white smile.
Which One Should I Get?
Teeth whitening is remarkably convenient, and can even be done at home if you can’t make time for a dentist appointment. In-office whitening also takes just one appointment, as opposed to veneers, which take at least two.
On the other hand, there’s some discoloration that isn’t caused by stains, but by age, enamel erosion, or certain medications. In that case, teeth whitening won’t be effective, and you’ll need to cover up the discoloration with veneers. Veneers will also last for decades, while teeth whitening will fade after anywhere from six months to two years.
Ultimately, a conversation with your dentist would allow them to take your unique situation into consideration and craft a treatment plan tailored to you.
About the Author
Dr. Scott Parker is a dentist who truly loves his chosen profession. He spends a lot of time staying on top of the latest in oral medicine to help his patients achieve the best oral health possible. Dr. Parker received his degree from Loma Linda University, and he maintains a faculty club membership with Spear Education so that he can continue his training.
If you have any questions about how to brighten your smile, he can be reached at his website or by phone at (909) 795-6019