Planning and Preparing for Dental Procedures: Your Questions Answered

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Planning and Preparing for Dental Procedures: Your Questions Answered

Making decisions about your smile can be confusing. Should you have a tooth pulled or get a root canal? Should you get adult braces or stick with a retainer? Should you use at-home whitening remedies or have your teeth professionally whitened? If questions like these are keeping you up at night, you've come to the right place. I used to stress out over routine dental procedures, and as a result, I did loads of research on everything dental-related. To help others, I'm using this blog as a place to collect, review and share what I've learned through the years. I hope you can use the information here to help you plan and prepare for your next dental appointment.

What Your Dentist Wants You to Know Before You Try Teeth Whitening

Are you feeling less than happy with the colour of your teeth? As an exceedingly popular procedure in Australia, teeth whitening allows you to remove stains that build over time. Before you try it, though, there are a few things your dentist might want you to know.

Staining beneath the surface of your teeth can affect the outcomes

Before you proceed with teeth whitening, it's worth knowing more about 'calculus.' Also known as tartar, calculus affects the colour of your teeth. As such, it's worth addressing it before you engage in frequent teeth whitening procedures. Your cosmetic dentist can identify whether you suffer from it and will recommend treatments accordingly. 

It's better to use a professional for teeth whitening than someone who's unqualified

Although it's possible to purchase teeth whitening kits off the shelf, they don't carry the same power as the solutions that a dentist will use. To create a solution that works best for you, your dentist will use their knowledge of anatomy and other physiological processes that can affect the colour of your teeth. As a result, their approach will deliver the best outcomes.

Additionally, using a professional prevents over-whitening. Over-whitening your teeth can weaken the enamel and may lead to a look that's unnatural.

Your initial consultation and treatment may not occur during the same appointment

In order for a dentist to use their knowledge to assess your oral health and suitability for teeth whitening, they need to perform an initial consultation and basic examination. Unless a dental technician is on hand, they also need to create a mouthpiece that works with your anatomy to spread the whitening solution evenly.

You may find that your dentist is able to whiten your teeth on the same day if your oral health makes you suitable and they have the right equipment to hand. In some cases, though, you might return for a second appointment. At your second appointment, you may also see a technician or hygienist who's acting under the guidance of the person who first assessed you.

Finally, it's also worth knowing that you might need to carry on the work at home yourself. From top-up solutions that your dentist prepares for you to pens that bleach heavily-stained spots, there are lots of ways you can work with a dental professional to achieve the best look. For now, consider arranging an initial consultation and work from there.