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Old 11-28-2007, 11:18 AM
People_Mover People_Mover is offline
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Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,297
Default Ask Mover about Bleaching/Whitening your teeth

I'm 26 years old and have smoked 1/2 pack - pack of smokes for 10 years, drank coffee a couple times a week, etc... When I got my braces off at 15 years old, I had great teeth, but unfortunately, they became a little discolored with yellow stains and my smile just wasn't the same. I'm in the real estate market, so I'm meeting people all the time and need to dress nice and present myself well to potential clients and stained teeth doesn't help to seal a deal. I've used the white stripes before with decent results, but after a month or two passes, it seems like they didn't do much.

Anyway, my wife booked the two of us dentist appointments. After the regular check up, I asked about the whitening procedure they offer and how much it cost. I decided on the ZOOM whitening/bleaching procedure. The cost is $500.00. My dentist (prob a 9 on hot or not, ldo) explained to me that smoking, coffee, soda, wine, berries, etc... all slowly stain your teeth. It's okay to drink a soda while eating, but when you're sitting at your desk sipping on it all day long, it stains your teeth. (coke, pepsi, etc.. not clear ones like sprite or sierra mist)

I asked the difference between the Crest White Strips for 30.00 compared to this $500.00 procedure and she stated, the white strips are good for their cost, however, they only remove or whiten up the top layer of your teeth. This is similar to whitening toothpastes. They only get the top layer of enamal. In order to properly remove stains, you have to open up the pores of your teeth and basically suck out the stains or bleach them from yellow to white. White strips do the trick if you have a wedding or family photos in a week you need to "freshen up" for, but your teeth will eventually be back to what they were before because you never got the "deeper" stains. In addition, the strips are pretty small and gooy and it gets all over your fingers plus the strip barely covers your front 4-6 teeth so during a big smile, you may see a whitened front 6, but your canines to premolars to molars are all still going to look pretty yellow and discolored.

So away we went and I decided, let's spend the $500.00 each on the whitening. So you lay back in the chair with hopefully a good looking dental assistant. She explained the process would take around 2 hours. First, they put these grabber things on both sides of your mouth to spread your cheeks apart and put you in a constant smile. They put this rubbery thing in your mouth to bite down on which is fairly uncomfortable. Then they stuff your mouth full of gauze, all around your gums to protect them from the bleach and the bright light that is "zoomed" onto your teeth. So now you're sitting there with gauze all in your mouth and a big puller thing on both sides of your mouth spreading your cheeks apart so only your teeth are showing.

The dentist paints on the bleach for your teeth and then this machine with a big light that looks like a vacuum cleaner is placed directly over your spread out lips to blast your teeth with light. It's pretty uncomfortable but you are given a pad and paper to write with if you have any pain or need the light to stop. The ZOOM machine that looks like a vacuum cleaner is placed over your teeth for 20 minutes. It's the slowest 20 minutes of your life. There are 4 green lights on top of the machine that you can see and each time one of them lights up, 5 minutes have passed. You can feel your teeth getting weaker and they feel porus or holey. After the first 20 minutes, they put some more bleach on your teeth, and the vacuum cleaner looking thing comes back with more light to blast your teeth with. During the 3rd 20 minute session, you begin to feel "zaps" of pain through your gums and teeth. It feels like your getting tazered and it hurts a little, but you think to yourself, 'this is going to be worth it" so you suck it up. The 4th and final 20 minutes of light on your teeth is pretty sucky. You get "zapped" 4-5 times and it's not comfortable at all. The light "ZOOM" machine that looks like a vacuum cleaner is removed from your lips and all the gauze is removed as well as the devices that had your mouth spread open.

The dentist comes back in and gave me a mirror to look. I saw a little difference but not much however she said, drink lots of water and it'll strengthen your teeth and make then whiter. For 48 hours after the whitening procedure, you can't have anything with color or dye in it. Basically, drink water or sprite, no smoking, no coffee, no berries, wine, ketchup, mustard, any of that. I basically had toast and fetticine alfredo for 2 days.

Leaving the dentist, your teeth & gums hurt. You get a few more "zaps" throughout the next 24-36 hours or so. It's hard to chew food for the first 12 hours or so. I did exactly what they said, lots of water, no smoking, etc.. My teeth did get significantly whiter over the next 48 hours.

They also made a mold of your teeth so they could give you this mouthpiece thing that you should wear at night. You get a NightCap Gel that you have to place in the mouthpiece and sleep with at night. I did it for a few hours, but it wasn't that comfortable plus the gel tastes like ass if any of it gushes out of the mouthpiece onto your tongue. After 48 hours, the zaps stop, however your gums still hurt a little bit and your teeth still feel a little weak, but you can really notice a difference. My teeth are 1000% better than what they were before.

Yes, it hurts a little bit and $500.00 is a lot of money for whitening, but I feel it's worth it. I asked how often people get it done and she said it depends on how much you smoke, your lifestyle of sodas, wine, and taking care of your teeth etc... but some people do it once a year. So that's about it.

Cliffs: Spent 500.00 on bleaching/whitening my teeth. Hurts a lot, but is worth it.

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