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What if you are faithfully brushing and flossing your pearly whites and they are still not as white as you would like? Take heart! There are some things you can do to make a relatively quick change and improve your smile.

There are a variety of whitening options available to you, using hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. They work by using a whitening tray or gel that fits over your teeth for a specific amount of time and break down stains so they appear less visible.

Whitening toothpastes are available in your local drugstore or supermarket and use abrasives to whiten teeth. Fairly inexpensive and easy to find (seek out the ADA Seal of acceptance on the label) they do only remove stains on the enamel and so they don’t change the actual color of your tooth.

Chairside bleaching is done by your dentist and is the most effective tooth whitening treatment you can use. It usually takes only one visit and all you have to do is sit comfortably and wait in the dental chair while your dentist applies the bleach solution to your teeth.

Your dentist can also give you an effective tooth whitening product to take home with you. You will be sent home with a bleaching gel which you place in a tray and wear over your teeth. While the bleach is not as strong as the one used in-office, it is still more powerful than treatments you available your local drugstore or supermarket.

There are reasons why your teeth can lose their beautiful white sheen causing you to seek out help to restore them to their former brightness. Some of these can be avoided, so take a look here:

If you use tobacco regularly in the form of cigarettes, cigars, pipes or chewing tobacco, your teeth are exposed to tar and nicotine, both of which stain tooth enamel a yellowish brown color.

A side effect of medications such as blood pressure-lowering drugs, antihistamines, or antidepressants, is tooth darkening. Antibiotics like tetracycline and doxycycline can also darken teeth in babies so that they may need teeth whitening when they grow up.

If your mouth has an unforeseen injury via sports or an accident, your teeth can darken because the tooth reacts to this injury by creating more dentin, which is darker and yellower than your tooth enamel.

The most common tooth darkening staining come from your favorite cup of morning coffee, tea, or wine because of their chromogens (color pigments) which stain your teeth by attaching to the tooth enamel.

Time is not kind to your teeth! Tooth enamel gets thinner with age, exposing the dentin layer underneath. Tooth brushing wears down tooth enamel over the years so it helps to use a soft-bristle toothbrush and brush gently.

Thankfully, you have choices when you want to brighten your teeth again! Give our office a call at 928-634-5566 and we will tell you more about your options. Dr. Bruce Westover and his staff is excited to help you with all your dental needs!