If your teeth always look dull or yellow even though you've tried home tooth whitening products, you may be frustrated and think you have to live with a smile that causes you embarrassment. However, that isn't the case. Your dentist can whiten your smile using various techniques such as laser whitening or veneers. Here's a look at how these two treatments differ and how to know which one is for you.
Laser Teeth Whitening
Laser whitening uses peroxide and a laser to remove stains from food and yellow discoloration from smoking. It is much more effective than products you use at home because the peroxide is stronger and using the laser makes the treatment more effective. When laser whitening works, you can see results after a single treatment. Just because you haven't had results from home treatments, it doesn't mean laser treatments won't work.
However, there are some discolorations that the whitening procedure can't help. Your dentist will evaluate your teeth to determine the type of stains you have and decide if they can be whitened with a laser. If your teeth are dark because of an earlier injury or as a side effect of medications, laser whitening might not help. Also, laser whitening won't change the color of crowns.
Veneers can whiten any type of discoloration because a veneer fits on top of your tooth to cover stains. You can have a single veneer put on one tooth, which you might need if one of your teeth was injured. You can also have veneers put on all your front teeth, which you may need if all your teeth are discolored due to medication. You can choose the shade of white you want before the veneers are applied, so you'll have guaranteed results.
A very thin layer of your enamel is removed so the veneers slip into place and appear to be your natural teeth. They are an excellent way to achieve a bright, white smile in a short amount of time. Plus, as an added benefit, veneers can also alter the shape of your teeth if they need it so your teeth appear straighter and more even.
The first step is to visit your dentist for an evaluation so you can examine all the options for improving your smile. If you're self-conscious about the color of your teeth, there are treatments available to help. If you're one of the people who can't be helped with the usual whitening procedures, then veneers might be a good way to achieve the smile you've always wanted. Contact a dentist, such as Leo Uicker DDS, for more help.