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Teeth Whitening – Springfield, MO

The Trusted, Effective Way to Brighten Your Smile

a before-and-after shot showing discolored and whitened teeth

You may look in the mirror and wonder how, after brushing and flossing, your teeth are still stained and discolored. You may even flip through a magazine and found yourself longing for a model or movie star’s smile. Thankfully, you don’t have to live with discolored or yellowing teeth. If you would like a whiter, brighter smile, talk to your cosmetic dentist in Springfield about teeth whitening.

Who is a Good Candidate for Teeth Whitening?

a call center worker smiling

Most patients are good candidates for in-office or take-home teeth whitening. However, if you have existing oral health problems, like a cavity, Dr. Olson will recommend treating them before moving forward with a cosmetic procedure. This is to make sure that you can enjoy your new-and-improved smile for as long as possible.

Causes of Tooth Discoloration

a person drinking coffee

Your teeth may become discolored for a variety of reasons. Chemicals in tobacco, coffee, tea, and red wine can change the color of your teeth when you enjoy these products regularly. Certain medications (such as tetracycline), excessive fluoride, and previous dental work may also cause unsightly stains on your tooth enamel. Even aging can make your teeth more discolored as you grow older.

Genetics can also determine the color of your teeth. While we think of tooth enamel as white, the natural, unstained shade of your teeth can range from pearly white to bluish gray to pale yellow. Even if you brush and floss daily, you may have genetically inherited healthy teeth that do not naturally look white.

Of course, you don’t have to live with discolored teeth. When you explain your desire to have whiter teeth to our team, they will examine your mouth and recommend one of the following ways to whiten and brighten your smile.

How Does Teeth Whitening Work?

a man viewing his smile in a mirror at a dental office

At Olson Family Dental, we offer multiple types of teeth whitening to fit your unique needs and budget, including take-home and in-office treatment. To find out which one would work best for you, schedule a consultation today!

Take-Home Teeth Whitening

a take-home teeth whitening kit

If you’d prefer not to wait in a dentist’s office, Dr. Olson can create clear, customized dental trays for you and recommend a bleaching agent. You can pour this solution, which usually contains 10 percent carbamide peroxide, in the trays and wear them during the day or at night, at home or work, to whiten your teeth. Most dentists recommend that you use the trays for an hour a day over one to two weeks to achieve the best effects.

In-Office Teeth Whitening

: a person receiving in-office teeth whitening

In-office whitening is one of the safest and quickest ways to whiten your teeth. During this process, your dentist will place a protective rubber dam around your gums and apply a solution of 15 to 35% carbamide peroxide, a chemical found in most bleaching products, to your teeth. Depending on the whitening method, Dr. Olson may also use a laser or special lamp to speed up the whitening process. In-office whitening can give you dazzlingly white teeth in under an hour, making it great for patients who need fast results for an upcoming special event in their life.

Tips for Maintaining a Brighter Smile

a person smiling and brushing their teeth

  • With all whitening systems, we advise you not to eat or drink items that can discolor your teeth since recently whitened teeth are more likely to absorb stains. If you can, try to abstain from products that stain indefinitely, since this will keep your teeth whiter.
  • You may want to hold off on the cup of hot coffee or glass of iced tea since whitening systems can cause increased sensitivity in your teeth and gums. These side effects pass with time, but if they persist or other problems arise, you should contact your dentist immediately.
  • Before you pursue any whitening system, talk to your dentist. Not all whitening systems are alike, and some people, such as those with recessed gums or exposed root surfaces, should avoid certain bleaching products. Your dentist can also help you if you have difficulties removing dark stains.
  • When you use a whitening product, follow your dentist’s instructions. Most home whitening systems should be used for only two to four weeks. If you want to maintain the color of your teeth, be sure to brush and floss daily and see your dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings.
  • You may look in the mirror and wonder how, after brushing and flossing, your teeth are still stained and discolored. You may even flip through a magazine and found yourself longing for a model or movie star’s smile. Thankfully, you don’t have to live with discolored or dingy colored teeth. If you would like a whiter, brighter smile, talk to your dentist about teeth whitening.

Understanding the Cost of Teeth Whitening

woman smiling while pointing to her teeth

Most people want to know the potential cost of teeth whitening in Springfield before deciding to move forward with it. Given that each situation is unique, the answer will differ depending on the person. In the following section, we will outline the factors that can impact the overall price, providing you with a clearer insight into what to expect. Alternatively, if you prefer to speak with one of our team members, feel free to reach out and give us a call today!

Factors that Affect the Cost of Teeth Whitening

woman visiting dentist

While professional teeth whitening comes at a standard price, certain factors can influence whether the process of enhancing your smile will include additional costs. These include:

  • The Severity of Discoloration – Patients with severe staining might require multiple treatments to achieve their desired shade.
  • Necessary Preparatory Treatments – If you have cavities or gum disease, these conditions must be addressed before starting the whitening process. Neglecting this step may result in further complications.
  • Presence of Veneers/Restorations – It's important to note that teeth whitening doesn't have an effect on veneers, crowns, fillings, or other dental restorations. To achieve a uniformly white smile, you may need to consider replacing your existing dental work to ensure seamless integration.

Types of Teeth Whitening: What Do They Cost?

woman holding teeth whitening strip

Different types of teeth whitening treatments come at different costs. Here's a breakdown:

  • In-Office Whitening – Typically ranges from $400 to $800.
  • Take-Home Whitening Kit – This option includes custom-made trays and a professional whitening gel for home use, usually totaling a few hundred dollars.
  • Store-Bought Whitening Trays – Available in most supermarkets and pharmacies, these kits are priced at around $100 or less.
  • Strips, Gels, & Whitening Toothpastes – Depending on the retailer, these budget-friendly options can range from $7 to $40.

Fast Teeth Whitening vs. Inexpensive Teeth Whitening

patient smiling in mirror

For patients on a budget, they may be tempted to opt for the most affordable choice, even if it means using store-bought products. However, it's crucial to consider factors beyond just the price.

While professional teeth whitening in Springfield may come with a slightly higher cost, you're investing in superior-quality and safer products. Dr. Olson will utilize tools and materials that yield significantly better results. Additionally, they will conduct an oral examination before the treatment to ensure the overall health of your mouth. All in all, you'll likely find greater satisfaction in your smile and save money in the long run by avoiding frequent touch-ups.

Options For Making Teeth Whitening Affordable

patients discussing financing options with dental professional

As teeth whitening falls under cosmetic dentistry, it's typically not covered by dental insurance. This means you'll need to explore alternative payment options. Fortunately, our practice provides additional financing solutions to make your treatment more budget-friendly, including CareCredit Financing. This option allows you to divide the total cost of your whitening treatment into manageable monthly installments. Plus, many plans come with little-to-no interest.

Teeth Whitening FAQs

patient smiling while looking in dental mirror

Does Teeth Whitening Hurt?

Many patients are worried about pain during teeth whitening in Springfield. But don’t worry – professional whitening treatments are tailored to you, making them less likely to cause discomfort compared to generic products.

Our team can adjust the treatment based on your sensitivity levels, so don't hesitate to share any concerns. If you're prone to sensitivity, you spread out your whitening sessions and steer clear of hot drinks. Using a recommended specialized toothpaste can also help minimize discomfort. Remember, communication is key for a personalized and pain-free whitening experience. So, relax and let the professionals take care of your smile!

How Can I Make My Teeth Whitening Results Last?

To ensure your results last as long as possible, you should prioritize maintaining a solid at-home oral hygiene routine. Brush your teeth at least twice a day, floss daily, and use mouthwash regularly. Also, be sure to stay on top of your six-month dental checkups and cleanings. Dr. Olson will clean hard-to-reach areas and catch dental issues early. Watch your diet by limiting dark-colored foods and beverages. When sipping on coffee or wine, use a straw to minimize contact with your teeth. Quitting smoking is crucial for long-lasting results, as it can contribute to staining. With these practices, you'll keep your new and improved smile shining for months to years!

Does Teeth Whitening Damage Enamel?

No! Teeth whitening gel does not damage healthy enamel when used correctly. However, if your teeth have underlying issues like decay or gum disease, it's crucial to address those before whitening to avoid potential problems.

At-home remedies, such as activated charcoal and hydrogen peroxide, can actually cause harm rather than help. Overusing whitening products may also lead to enamel erosion. To ensure a safe and effective whitening experience, always consult your dentist first. Even if you choose not to go for professional whitening, your dentist can guide you on products and oral hygiene practices that support your smile goals without compromising enamel health.

Is Teeth Whitening Permanent?

Teeth whitening is not permanent. The longevity of results varies from a few months to a few years based on your oral care. Following a solid at-home hygiene routine, attending regular six-month checkups, and steering clear of bad oral health habits contribute to lasting results. For ongoing brightness, consider touch-up treatments, ensuring your smile stays pearly white!