With spring fast approaching, so starts the wedding season. Every bride wants to shine on her big day and walk down the aisle beaming. Teeth whitening is a fast and easy way to enhance the smile. While there are many teeth whitening options in the market, many brides (and grooms) choose to have professional teeth whitening treatment as the results usually last longer and teeth are whiter in comparison to other short-term solution such as whitening strips.
Q: How long before the wedding should I start professional teeth whitening?
A: The most appropriate time for teeth whitening is around a month before the wedding as teeth whitening sometimes can cause sensitivity and may last for a few days. It is important to have a full dental examination and assessment to ensure that professional teeth whitening is suitable for you. Many factors affect the results of whitening and therefore the choice of teeth whitening options, such as antibiotic usages during childhood, previous history of teeth trauma, any root canal treated teeth, teeth sensitivity and presence of any other fillings, crowns, veneers and dentures as they don’t change colours like the natural teeth. Some people will need to have fillings replaced following their whitening treatment so that the new material matches your brighter, whiter smile.
A professional teeth cleaning is also required prior to teeth whitening to remove tartar and surface stains to allow teeth whitening gel to work better.
Q: What teeth whitening options are available to me?
- In Office whitening uses a high concentration gel that is activated by laser, UV or LED light.
- Pros: Faster results.
- Cons: more expensive, can cause greater sensitivity so best to avoid if you have teeth sensitivity.
- Time: takes about 60-90 minutes at the surgery
- Take home DIY alternative, your dentist will take molds of your teeth and make custom-fitted bleaching trays. A lower concentration gel is applied to the inside of the trays and trays are worn during the day or overnight. Depending on the concentration of the gel, it may take few times, ranging from 15-30 minutes each time during the day or overnight.
- Pros: gentle, good for people with sensitive teeth, effective and cheaper, trays can be used again later for future teeth whitening treatments if they are still well fitted. Teeth whitening does not last forever and future treatments may be required to maintain their brightness.
- Cons: time consuming, may take between a few days to 2 weeks for results
Q: How do I keep my teeth whiter for longer?
Regardless of your whitening options, post treatment the enamel pores are still open so avoid dark coloured soft drinks, red sauce, strong coffee and tea, red wine and coloured foods such as curry, cherries and blueberries. Anything will stain your wedding gown will stain your teeth. Smoking cigarettes can also cause teeth staining. Regular brushing, and flossing will help to remove surface stain mechanically.
Teeth whitening pens are available and can be used for touch ups on the big day and can be easily kept in your purse.
Q: What are other ways to improve my smile for the wedding day?
A: A growing number of brides and grooms are choosing cosmetic dentistry to improve their smile for the special day as the photos and videos last a lifetime, liked, shared and tagged on Facebook and Instagram. Some options available are tooth bonding, porcelain veneers, crowns, bridges and implants. But because some procedures typically require more time to complete, approximately 1 to 4 months, it is important to see your dentist as soon as possible to ensure you have enough time before your big day.
If you have any questions please feel free to send us a message! We’d love to help you prepare for your special day.