I think I over-bleached my teeth

I have been bleaching my teeth myself for the past 2 years, at least every 2 weeks, sometimes every week. I leave the bleach on my teeth for 1 to 2 hours at a time. At first they looked beautiful but now I am getting scared that I have totally messed up. I guess I overdid it. Within the past 3 or 4 months my teeth have started looking very dull, somewhat gray. I have avoided my usual dentist because I didn’t go through him to get the bleaching gel. Could I have overdone it bleaching my teeth? Is there a way to reverse what I have done or have I messed up my teeth for good? Zoelle

Zoelle – Many people want an exceptionally white smile. Teeth bleaching gel contains carbamide peroxide, which if overused, can cause teeth to become brittle and discolored.

If you haven’t done so already, give your teeth a break from the bleaching gel. Use toothpaste that re-mineralizes your teeth, such as ProEnamel. If you are not comfortable returning to your current dentist, find an experienced cosmetic dentist to have your teeth examined. After examining your teeth, the dentist can tell you how extensive the damage is and whether or not your natural teeth can be recover from the over-bleaching, or if cosmetic dentistry is needed.

Cosmetic dentistry, including porcelain crowns, porcelain veneers, and dental bonding—depending on a patient’s case—can be used to beautifully restore teeth.

For our readers: Getting your teeth professionally whitened by a dentist helps ensure that teeth bleaching is right for you. Bleaching gel is available in different strengths, and a cosmetic dentist can determine which solution is best for your case. Also, your dentist is able to monitor the progress of the whitening and determine if adjustments need to me made.

This post is sponsored by Plano, TX family dentist Dr. Miranda Lacy.


Looking for affordable female cosmetic dentist that does excellent work

I love my dentist. He is great for cleanings, fillings, etc., but I am not sure that I can trust him to do my cosmetic dentistry work. I asked him about his continuing ed in cosmetic dentistry, but he said although he really doesn’t have much he does a good job. I don’t think he has any extra training all. He referred me to a colleague, but that dentist’s cost were much higher than average. I think part of it is to pay for his swank office. I need too much work done to pay that much for my smile and the office. I know I can do a Google search to find one, but do you have any suggestions on how I find a good affordable dentist in my area? If the cosmetic dentist is female that’s a bonus, too. – Sarai

Sarai – Ask friends and acquaintances for recommendations for an affordable female cosmetic dentist. You can also search for an experienced cosmetic dentist on the internet. Visit each dentist’s website to find out if he or she has any post-graduate training in cosmetic dentistry. The website should also indicate how much ongoing continuing education the dentist participates in each year.

The dentist may have membership, fellowship, or diplomate status in cosmetic, or aesthetic, dentistry organizations. The website should also show before-and-after pictures of patient cases the dentist has completed.

Affordable services are often made possible through payment plans or financing. No-interest financing is often available. Additionally, many dentists are willing to provide treatment in phases. This allows you to progressively pay for dental services, based on your budget. Call the dentist’s office for details.

After you have selected a few dentists with cosmetic dentistry qualifications, schedule a consultation with each of them. Consultations allow you to get a feel for the office environment and staff, and determine if you like the dentist’s chairside manner and communication style. Those are important factors in establishing a long-term relationship with your dentist.

This post is sponsored by Plano, TX dentist Dr. Miranda Lacy.

Missing Teeth and Your Heart

Research published in a December 2015 article of the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology shows that the risk of death in patients with coronary heart disease (plaque buildup inside the coronary arteries) who are missing all of their teeth. The 3.7-year study included more than 15,000 patients from 39 countries. About 16 percent of patients in the study had no teeth at all, and another 40 percent were missing half their teeth.

Compared with patients who had all of their teeth, those in the study who were completely endentulous (all teeth are missing) had a series of increased risks that included: 27 percent for a major cardiovascular event, 85 percent for cardiovascular death, 81 percent of all-cause death, and 67 percent for stroke.

During the study, 746 patients had heart attacks. During follow up, 1,543 of the patients surveyed had major cardiovascular events; 705 experienced cardiovascular death; 1,120 died from other causes; and 301 patients had a stroke. In the follow-up events, an increase in tooth loss was associated with an increase in the risk a cardiovascular event, death by other causes, and stroke. Results were not as conclusive with patients who had heart attacks during the study.

Who were the most at-risk patients?

  • Women, who were also:
  • smokers;
  • less active;
  • and more likely to have diabetes;
  • higher blood pressure;
  • higher body-mass index;
  • and lower education

Why Are Coronary Heart Disease and Missing Teeth Related?

The most common cause of missing teeth is gum disease. Inflammation from gum disease affects the heart, and it increases the risk of heart trauma in people who have heart disease, or who are at risk for it. Poor dental hygiene contributes to gum disease.

The study emphasizes the importance of daily brushing your teeth and flossing between them. Brushing alone isn’t enough. Flossing removes bacteria-producing debris that causes inflammation and gum disease. Regularl dental exams and cleanings remove plaque and tartar from your teeth, and greatly reduce the risk of gum disease. Examinations from your dental hygienist and dentist provide early detection of gum disease.

The conclusion? Good oral hygiene habits keep your teeth clean and can contribute to a healthier heart.

This post is sponsored by Plano, TX female dentist Dr. Miranda Lacy.