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Teeth Whitening

Bleaching Teeth Outside The Dental Office

If you want to whiten your teeth without spending an extended amount of time in the dental chair home bleaching is for you. A fast and effective way to bleach at home is to have custom bleaching trays made. This process includes an initial visit. An impression is taken of your teeth and custom fitted bleaching trays are made. We make the bleach trays right in our office. They are usually ready for you the next day. When you pick up your trays you will receive specific instructions about the bleaching process. Please remember fillings, crowns and veneers do NOT bleach. They will need to be replaced to match the new lighter shade if they are in a visible place.

Potential Side Effects

Tooth Sensitivity: A few people experience tooth sensitivity. This is minimized if bleaching times are reduced, or if fluoride gel is used in the trays between bleaching.

Gum Tenderness: Occasionally, gum tissues become irritated, and sometimes a mild sloughing of the superficial layers of the gums occurs. Reduction or elimination of bleaching stops the sloughing.

Discomfort in Jaw Joints:  If bleaching trays are worn too long during any given day, discomfort in jaw joints may occur.  When the trays are removed the discomfort will disappear.

Home Bleaching Instructions

  • Brush and floss teeth. Rinse mouth well.

  • Discontinue bleaching if tooth sensitivity, gum irritation, or any other negative event occurs. Notify us of the problem immediately, and we will advise you.

  • Do not eat or drink anything that would stain your teeth (coffee, tea, etc.) for at least 2 hours after you bleach.

  • Rinse the tray with water after use, and tip it upside down to dry. Fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinse may be used if desired.

  • Insert the tray into your mouth over the teeth, expectorate excess gel and wear loaded tray for 2-4 hours daily. The bleach can be used a night while sleeping.

  • Place a small amount of bleaching gel into each space in the tray for every tooth to be lightened.

We have recorded the “before bleach” color of your teeth. In most cases a follow up appointment is not necessary. We will advise you if we need to see you for a follow up. Keep in mind the time needed to reach the desired shade varies. Very dark grey or brown shades may take several months whereas light yellow may take only a week. If you bleach too much your teeth can start looking translucent with a grey tint to them. If you have questions or concerns during the bleaching process please give us a call.