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Making the choice to get your teeth whitened can come from a desire to have healthier-looking teeth and be more confident in your smile. But were you aware that going back to some of the same habits could cause your teeth to lose their whitened look more quickly than you realize?

Here at Grace Dental Group, Woo Young Lee, DDS — as well as the rest of our staff — wants you to make the most of your teeth whitening treatment. That’s why we offer tips and tricks to ensure that your new look will last.

What to expect with teeth whitening treatment

At Grace Dental Group, we offer professional teeth whitening with a clinical-grade bleaching technique and solution. This means the results will be smoother, more even, and faster, not to mention the procedure often causes less sensitivity to the teeth and gums than an at-home kit. Dr. Lee may also feel that you are a good candidate for a special teeth whitening light treatment that allows for even stronger results.

Professional teeth whitening is the best way to go when it comes to choosing this procedure for yourself. However, we also know that the results of teeth whitening can vary greatly. In some cases, patients see whiter teeth for years after, while others may only see the results they want for a few months. The reason for this is aftercare.

Making the most of your teeth whitening treatment

Making the most of your teeth whitening procedure starts with you. We will do everything we can to make your teeth whiter and healthier-looking in the office, but once you leave, the onus is on you to keep them that way.

According to a 2014 study, though teeth whitening has been an available and popular treatment since the 1980s, it’s always difficult to say for certain how long the results will last. This is because the longevity of the treatment relies so much on patient upkeep.

Below are the ways we suggest prolonging the teeth whitening treatment results and making the most of the money and time you spent on it.

1. Take good care of your teeth

This may sound like a no-brainer, but it’s still crucial to mention. Make sure to brush your teeth twice a day, floss once a day, and schedule regular cleanings every six months.

2. Use sensitive products

After a teeth whitening procedure, it’s common to experience some sensitivity to certain toothpaste, mouthwashes, or even food and drinks of specific temperatures. Make sure to use sensitive products on your teeth and avoid jumping straight into extremely cold or hot foods after your treatment.

3. Steer clear of staining foods and beverages

Unfortunately, many people seek teeth whitening because certain drinks (like coffee and red wine) or foods (like berries or tomato sauce) have caused stains to form over time. One of the best ways to keep these stains from returning is to cut way back on foods and drinks that stain.

4. Don’t smoke

If you chose teeth whitening to help with nicotine stains, but you’re still trying to decide if smoking is worth it, take this as a sign to quit. Smoking will quickly stain your newly whitened teeth, which means you won’t be able to make the most of your teeth whitening treatment.

5. Water is your friend

Rinsing with water is one of the easiest and best things you can do for your newly whitened teeth. For example, if you decide to give in and have a glass of red wine, make sure to rinse with water afterward. We recommend rinsing with water whenever you can; it’s a great, simple way to keep your whitened teeth happy.

6. Don’t forget to follow up

It’s critical to remember that, even if you do everything right, your results won’t last forever. As such, follow-up treatments are usually an essential part of teeth whitening maintenance.

However, make sure you don’t overdo it, as getting your teeth whitened too often could cause unhealthy results for your teeth. Dr. Lee will help you determine just how often you need to come in for a touchup.

Ready for your whitening appointment?

If you follow the rules we’ve set out for you, you’ll be able to get your teeth whitened professionally and make the most of the procedure long after it’s over. Call (415) 921-8867 or visit us online to make an appointment at our San Francisco, CA office.

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