Teeth Whitening

Why Teeth Discolor

Chemicals in foods, beverages, and tobacco can gradually change the color of your teeth, as can the effects of aging. Medications such as tetracycline, excessive fluoride, and previous dental work may also cause unsightly stains on tooth enamel. Genetics also affect the color of the teeth. While we think of tooth enamel as white, the natural, unstained shade of teeth ranges from pearly white to bluish gray to pale yellow. Even if you brush and floss daily, stains can tarnish your beautiful smile and steal the confident image you want to convey.

Teeth Whitening Options

You don’t have to live with discolored teeth. After a thorough examination, we can recommend one of the following options for whitening and brightening your smile.

In-Office Teeth Whitening

In-office teeth whitening is one of the safest and quickest ways to whiten your teeth. During this process, we place a protective rubber dam around the gums and apply a bleaching solution to your teeth that contains 15 to 35% carbamide peroxide, a chemical found in most whitening products . Depending on the whitening method, Dr. Oyler may also use a laser or special lamp to speed up the bleaching process. In-office whitening can give you dazzlingly white teeth in less than an hour.

At-Home Teeth Whitening

If you'd prefer, we are able to create clear, customized bleaching trays for you to use at home. Our professional-grade at-home whitening solution usually contains 10% carbamide peroxide. Simply pour the solution into the custom application trays and wear them for an hour a day. You will notice whiter teeth almost immediately, but the most dramatic results will appear after one to two weeks of daily treatment.

Over-the-Counter Teeth Whitening

You can purchase many home-use whiteners over the counter. While there are several on the market, most of these products are not as effective as the bleaching methods available in our office. If you prefer to use a store-bought whitening system, ask us which product would work best for you. We want you to have a smile you will be proud of, so we’re happy to help. Use over-the-counter products as directed, and never use whiteners for more than the recommended time period.

Teeth Whitening Toothpastes

If your teeth are sensitive to bleaching, Dr. Oyler may recommend a dentifrice (whitening toothpaste). These contain chemical or polishing agents to gently remove stains from the surface of your teeth. While your teeth won’t be as white as if you used a bleaching system, whitening toothpaste is safe, easy to use, and can be purchased over the counter.

After Teeth Whitening

With all whitening systems, we advise patients not to eat or drink foods that stain or smoke since recently whitened teeth more easily absorb stains. Teeth whitening systems may also cause increased sensitivity in your teeth and gums. These side effects pass with time, but if they persist, or other problems arise, you should contact our office immediately.

Teeth Whitening Alternatives

If bleaching and teeth whitening can't get your teeth as white as you’d like, veneers or bonding may be a good alternative. These cosmetic dentistry procedures are long lasting and do not discolor or stain. In addition to whitening your smile, veneers and bonding cover cracks, chips, and slight misalignments.

Learn More About Teeth Whitening

Check back soon for related articles.


We look forward to meeting you. Call (812) 537-4272 or request an appointment online to set up your first visit. We’ll be in touch soon.