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If you’re thinking about getting your teeth whitened, you’re not alone. The American Association of Orthodontists has discovered that nearly 90% of dental patients have requested teeth whitening. Here are a few FAQs:

Why are my teeth not white anymore?

There are a number of possible reasons. It may have to do with what you put in your mouth. Coffee, tea, red wine and tobacco are all major staining culprits. It might also be your age. Over time, your enamel layer gets thinner and more of the yellowish dentin shines through. Trauma to the mouth can also cause dentin to appear. Finally, it could be caused by certain medications you take, like antihistamines or antipsychotics, or medical treatments you’ve had, such as chemotherapy or radiation.

How do teeth whiteners make my smile brighter?

Whitening products contain one of two kinds of bleach: hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. These break tooth stains into smaller pieces, making your teeth appear brighter.

Does whitening work on all teeth?

No, it doesn’t. You’ll want to talk to Dr. Mark Andrews before you decide whether to whiten your teeth and how to do it. Yellow teeth bleach well, but brown and gray tones might not respond well. Veneers, crowns and fillings don’t bleach at all. Discoloration caused by medications or injuries won’t bleach either.

If you are interested in getting more information about the best teeth whitening options, please call Mark Andrews, D.D.S. in Kirkland, Washington at 425-821-8100. We are happy to help your smile sparkle.