Posts for tag: teeth whitening
Which Cosmetic Dentistry Procedure Is Right for You?
Want a smile that radiates beauty? Cosmetic dentistry can give you the Hollywood smile you've always dreamed of. Cosmetic dentistry refers to any dental work that improves the appearance of a patient's teeth. Led by Dr. Bernard Pak, Kirkland Smiles Dental Care (located in Kirkland, WA) offers a full range of cosmetic dentistry services to the patients they serve. The following information can help you determine which type of cosmetic dentistry procedure is right for you.
Cosmetic Bonding- Composite resin bonding is a fast, minimally invasive option that can create a beautiful smile. Cosmetic bonding is the application of a tooth-colored composite resin using adhesives and a curing light. Bonding is routinely used for cosmetic purposes to improve the appearance of decayed, chipped, and fractured teeth. Bonding is also to close gaps between teeth and improve the appearance of stained teeth.
Bridgework- You don't have to go through life with a missing tooth. If you have a missing tooth, a fixed bridge will allow you to smile with confidence. A dental bridge is a dental restoration that's used to replace one or more missing teeth. A bridge is made of two crowns and a fabricated tooth in the middle. A fixed dental bridge can last five to 15 years and even longer. With regular checkups and good oral hygiene, it's not unusual for the life span of a fixed bridge to be over 15 years.
Invisalign- Invisalign is the clear alternative to traditional braces for teens and adults. Invisalign corrects a wide variety of dental problems, including overbites, underbites, protruding teeth, cross bites, overcrowded teeth, gapped teeth, and crooked teeth. Using a series of aligner trays, Invisalign gradually moves your teeth toward the smile you've always wanted. It usually takes between 9 to 18 months to create a new smile using Invisalign.
Dental Crowns- Dental crowns can improve the appearance of your smile. A dental crown is a 'cap' that is designed to fit over the tooth so that it appears to be a natural tooth. A dental crown completely encases the visible portion of the tooth. Crowns restore the teeth to their normal size, shape, and function. The purpose of crowns is to make the teeth stronger or improve the way they look. Crowns can improve the look of chipped, cracked, discolored, or misshapen teeth.
Dental Implants- The absence of teeth can ruin a nice smile. Dental implants are the gold standard in the replacement of missing teeth. An implant is a small metal post that is inserted into the jawbone. It provides a strong foundation for a replacement tooth. The benefits of dental implants include improved appearance, improved speech, easier eating, improved comfort, and durability. Dental implants also prevent bone loss, teeth shifting, and facial sagging.
Porcelain Veneers- Veneers are ultra-thin, custom-made shells that are placed over the front part of the teeth. Porcelain veneers are used to restore teeth that are discolored, crooked, chipped, or cracked. It's also possible to fix gapped teeth through the use of porcelain veneers.
Teeth Whitening- In-office teeth whitening a revolutionary procedure that uses a strong whitening solution and chairside lamp to speed up the whitening process. In-office teeth whitening can give you a bright-white smile in less than 45 minutes. Dispensed by dentists, take-home teeth whitening kits involve filling a custom-fitted tray with whitening gel. Take-home teeth whitening kits provide fantastic results in one or two weeks of use.
Call Kirkland Smiles Dental Care at (425) 893-9500 right now to schedule a dental consultation in Kirkland, WA. Cosmetic dentistry can transform your appearance.
Do you look in the mirror and think, "My smile would be perfect if that tooth wasn't chipped and discolored."? Luckily, your Kirkland, WA, cosmetic dentist, Dr. Bernard Pak offers a variety of services that can enhance your smile.
Bonding offers an excellent option for many cosmetic issues
Whether you want to repair a chip, cover a discolored tooth, improve a tooth's shape, or hide imperfections such as minor cracks, dental bonding can do it! Your Kirkland dentist applies soft composite resin to your tooth before bonding the material to your enamel with a curing light. Bonding is a simple procedure and also one of the least expensive cosmetic dentistry options.
Veneers keep common tooth problems under wraps
Thin veneers are designed to hide issues that detract from your smile, such as chips, cracks, uneven surfaces and discolorations. Because the thin shells are attached to only the fronts of your teeth, they don't require extensive preparation. In fact, your dentist will only need to remove a very small amount of tooth enamel to ensure that the veneers fit well. Translucent porcelain veneers look like tooth enamel and are available in many shades of white. If you're covering a chip or discoloration, you'll probably want to match the color of surrounding teeth, however, when overall whitening is your goal, it makes sense to choose a shade significantly lighter in order to brighten your smile.
Whitening offers a quick, easy smile transformation
Most of us notice a little yellowing over the years. Stains from foods, beverages, and the overall passage of time may dull your smile, but it doesn't have to stay that way. Professional teeth whitening can lighten your teeth by several shades, leading to a completely revitalized smile.
Your Kirkland dentist uses hydrogen peroxide gel to break apart stain-causing pigments that collect in microscopic openings in your tooth enamel. Teeth whitening results generally last about two to three years, although you can keep your teeth looking whiter for longer if you avoid substances that tend to stain teeth, such as coffee, tea, cola, berries, soy sauce, sports drinks, and brightly colored candy.
Intrigued? Call today!
Are you ready to improve your smile? Call Kirkland, WA, cosmetic dentist, Dr. Bernard Pak at (425) 893-9500 to schedule your appointment.
Academy Award-winning actress Kathy Bates knows how important it is to present your best face to the world — and one of the most important features of that face is a beaming smile. But there came a point when she noticed something was a little off. “I've always had good teeth, but it seemed to me as I was getting older that they weren't looking as good,” Kathy explained in a recent interview with Dear Doctor magazine.
That's when she decided it was time to take action. Kathy had orthodontic treatment when she was in her fifties, and she keeps her smile bright with tooth whitening treatments. She uses a kit provided by her dentist with a safe, effective whitening solution.
Of course, a bright, healthy smile looks great anywhere — whether you're on the red carpet or “off the grid.” And you don't have to be a Hollywood star to have professional whitening treatments. In fact, teeth whitening is one of the most popular and affordable cosmetic treatments modern dentistry offers.
The basic options for professional teeth whitening include in-office bleaching or take-home kits. Both types of dentist-supervised treatments offer a safe and effective means of getting a brighter smile; the main difference is how long they take to produce results. A single one-hour treatment in the office can make your teeth up to ten shades lighter — a big difference! To get that same lightening with at-home trays, it would take several days. On the plus side, the take-home kit is less expensive, and can achieve the same results in a bit more time.
It's important to note that not all teeth can be whitened with these treatments. Some teeth have intrinsic (internal) stains that aren't affected by external agents like bleaches. Also, teeth that have been restored (with bonding or veneers, for example) generally won't change color. And you can't necessarily whiten your teeth to any degree: Every tooth has a maximum whiteness, and adding more bleach won't lighten it beyond that level. Most people, however, find that teeth whitening treatments produce noticeable and pleasing results.
What about those off-the-shelf kits or in-the-mall kiosks? They might work… or they might not. But one thing's for sure: Without a dentist's supervision, you're on your own. That's the main reason why you should go with a pro if you're considering teeth whitening. We not only ensure that your treatment is safe — we can also give you a realistic idea of what results to expect, and we will make sure that other dental problems aren't keeping you from having a great-looking smile.
How often does Kathy Bates see her dentist for a checkup and cleaning? “I go about every four months,” she noted. “I'm pretty careful about it.” And if you've seen her smile, you can tell that it pays off. If you would like more information about teeth whitening, please contact us or schedule an appointment. You can learn more in the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Important Teeth Whitening Questions Answered” and “Teeth Whitening.”
Whether performed in a dental office or using a home kit, teeth whitening applications are quite effective for bleaching exterior (extrinsic) stains on enamel surfaces. But what if your discoloration comes from inside the tooth? In this case, extrinsic teeth whitening won’t work — you’ll need to undergo an “internal bleaching” method, which can only be performed in a dentist's office.
There are a number of causes for “intrinsic” staining, including too much fluoride exposure or tetracycline use during childhood. One of the more common causes, though, occurs from root canal treatments used to remove the remnants of the pulp tissue inside a tooth’s pulp chamber and root canals. Certain cements used during the procedure to help seal in the filling material and leftover blood pigments can cause the tooth to darken over time.
To alleviate this discoloration, we use a bleaching agent, usually sodium perborate mixed with a diluted solution of hydrogen peroxide to achieve a safe, accelerated color change. After determining that the root canal filling is still intact and the bone is healthy, we create a small cavity in the back of the tooth to access the pulp chamber. The chamber is cleaned of any debris or stained material and then thoroughly irrigated. The original root canal filling is then sealed off to prevent leakage from the bleaching agent.
We then place the bleaching agent in the cleaned-out space with a cotton pellet and seal it in with a temporary adhesive. This step is repeated for several days until we achieve the desired shade of white. Once that occurs we then seal the dentin with a more permanent filling and then restore the cavity we created with a composite resin bonded to the enamel and dentin.
If we’re successful in achieving the desired color, intrinsic whitening could help you avoid more costly options like veneers or crowns for an otherwise healthy and attractive tooth. The end result would be the same — a beautiful smile without those unsightly stains.
If you would like more information on treating internal tooth stains, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine article “Whitening Traumatized Teeth.”
Australian heartthrob Hugh Jackman has won international recognition for his work on stage, screen and television, including his long-running portrayal of Wolverine in the X-Men film series, and his Academy-Award-nominated starring role in Les Miserables. Oh, and did we mention he was named the “sexiest man alive” by People magazine in 2008? So when Jackman once said “I have shocking teeth”… what did he mean?
“[My dentist] looked at my teeth and went, ‘Oh, my God, you've got gray teeth,’” the actor stated. The proposed cure: tooth whitening. But what if the action hero's teeth were brightened too much — would his look still convey his trademark rugged charm? To see how that issue was resolved, let's look a little closer at various methods of tooth whitening.
All Whitening Isn't the Same
Everyone has seen the kind of over-the-counter tooth whitening strips advertised in magazines and sold in drug stores. Most dentists agree that, given enough time, they can work in many cases. But there may be problems, too.
One is that unless you know what's actually causing the darkening, you can't be sure if there is an underlying issue that needs treatment — a root-canal problem, for example. Bleaching a diseased tooth is like painting over a rusty car: it camouflages the problem, but doesn't fix it. That's one reason why, before any whitening treatment is attempted, it's important to have a complete dental examination, with x-rays.
Another is that without professional supervision, it's more difficult to control the degree of whitening you will end up with. For safety reasons, over-the-counter whitening products have the least concentrated bleaching agent, and will probably require weeks of use to produce noticeable results. The next step up — a custom-designed, at-home bleaching kit from our office — will likely produce results twice as fast.
The Professional Advantage
At-home bleaching done under our supervision uses stronger whitening agents with a flexible plastic tray that's custom-made to fit your teeth. It's a cost-effective way to achieve several shades of whitening in a relatively short time. Plus, with the advantage of our experience and guidance, you can get excellent results safely and efficiently.
If you want the fastest and most controllable whitening, however, in-office whitening treatments are the best way to go. According to one study, using the most concentrated whiteners in a safe clinical setting produced a six-shade improvement in just three office visits! This would have required a week or more of at-home bleaching, or upwards of 16 daily applications of the over-the-counter whitening products!
In-office whitening also offers the greatest degree of control over the outcome. That's why it was the method Hugh Jackman chose for his treatments. By adjusting the concentration of the bleaching solution and the treatment time, Jackman's dentist made sure his teeth were pleasingly light — but still looked completely natural. And in our office, we can do the same for you.
So whether you're looking for a dazzlingly bright smile or a more subtle enhancement, the best way to start is to call our office for a consultation. For more information, see the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Important Teeth Whitening Questions Answered” and “Teeth Whitening.”