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whiteteeth

Whiter & Brighter: Scottsdale Dentists Break Down Teeth Whitening Products and Procedures

A great smile is one of the most effective first impressions a person can offer. It can give the sense of radiance, warmth and confidence. For the opposite sex, it is often times the most memorable feature upon meeting.

According to the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, 74 percent of adults surveyed believe an unattractive smile could affect a person’s career success. When the same group was asked what they each would change about their smile, “whiter and brighter” was the most popular answer.

Flashing that sparkling white smile is no longer only attainable by the rich and famous. Practically every brand in the dental care industry has released a teeth-whitening product for consumers looking to brighten their not-so-pearly whites.

We’ve researched the options available and consulted several local dentists to find out their top picks and recommendations.

At-home teeth whitening products

The ‘do-it-yourself’ cosmetic improvement product line is expanding each and every day. We are busy people, and price and convenience are often the utmost important factors in keeping up with our hectic lifestyles.

Whitening toothpastes and rinses are the most convenient and cost efficient, averaging $5 to $10. These products are used as a replacement to your regular toothpaste and mouthwash and can remove surface stains, brightening your smile by one shade after up to 12 weeks of use.

Strips and gels both require a longer time commitment – up to two times each day for two weeks. In this case, the longer commitment means longer-lasting results, averaging up to four months. Whitening strips and gels average $10 to $60. According to Dr. Ginger Price of Ginger Price DDS Family Cosmetic Dentistry, remembering to use the strips and gels as recommended can be difficult for many, and the results may suffer with each forgotten use.

Finally, tray-based whitening products may be worn the longest – sometimes even overnight. The average price range is between $15 and $35. While effective, the tray size and shape of this over-the-counter option is not customized to a person’s mouth, which means the gel may not sit as close to the tooth’s surface as it would with a custom-fit tray from a dentist’s office.

In-office teeth whitening procedures

The higher price tag of in-office teeth whitening is reflected in the results. For those who can pencil in an hour or two in the dentist’s chair, an in-office treatment might be well worth the time and money to achieve that whiter and brighter smile.

According to Dr. Christine Kopsky-Samuel of Market Street Dental, over-the-counter products typically result in whitening a person’s teeth by one to two shades, while in-office treatments often whiten teeth five to six shades. In-office procedures may require one or several treatments and can last anywhere up to a year.

During these treatments, a trained professional applies a bleaching formula directly to the tooth’s surface. The treatment may include the use of lights, lasers or heat to reach optimal results, and custom-fit trays may be utilized for in-office treatment and at-home maintenance.

In-office procedures can range anywhere between $150 and $1000, depending on the office, type of procedure and number of treatments required.

Keep in mind

Teeth whitening is considered to be a safe procedure for people with healthy teeth and gums, and few or no crowns or fillings. Gum irritation and tooth sensitivity are the most common side effects.

While using various whitening techniques three to four times each year is considered safe, Dr. John Badolato of Studio B Smiles recommends against excessive whitening – everyday use for longer than one month.

Because teeth whitening success is unique to each individual, “A consultation with a cosmetic dentist is usually the best plan for any consumer looking to optimize results on any budget,” stated Badolato.

BEST AT-HOME TEETH WHITENING PRODUCTS

Crest Whitening strips1. Dentist Recommended: Crest Whitestrips

Cost: $30 to $60

Use: Gel-based strips; varied wear times

Expectations: Varied results seen after several days of use and lasting results for up to four months

 

Glo2. Best Results: GLO Brilliant Personal Teeth Whitening

Cost: $200

Use: Tray-based whitening gel with light activity is used for eight minutes over five to 10 consecutive days.

Expectations: Up to five shades whiter

 

Listerine3. Convenience: LISTERINE Whitening Original Pre-Brush Rinse

Cost: $6

Use: Use as mouthwash for 60 second before brushing, twice daily

Expectations: One shade brighter

Dr. John Badolato, Studio B Smiles, Photo: Glory Shim

Dr. John Badolato Of Studio B Smiles Transforms Smiles, Lives Of Athletes

Putting on Their Game Face: Dr. John Badolato of Studio B Smiles transforms the smiles, lives of athletes and high-profile clients.


While sports players are revered for their talent, it can be difficult to deny the obvious: their looks, especially when they’re gracing the cover of magazines; appearing in local and national on-camera interviews; and marketing products, from Steve Nash in last year’s Vitamin Water commercials to Michael Phelps’ recent “Core Values” campaign for Louis Vuitton.

And here in Scottsdale, one cosmetic dentist in particular is familiar with the importance of an athlete’s image — Dr. John Badolato (or “Dr. B”), owner of Studio B Smiles.

Dr. B has been enhancing local sports players’ smiles for about eight years. Not only is he the official team dentist of the Phoenix Suns and the team dentist for the Arizona Rattlers, Grand Canyon University and the Phoenix Suns Dancers, but, let’s not forget, he’s also the Official Cosmetic Dentist for ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition.”

With so many high-profile clients, he knows image, particularly one’s smile, is important, both on and off the court.

“There’s two factors that over the last couple of decades have come into play,” Dr. B says. “One has always been there; that’s a player’s off-court and on-court marketability. These guys have side deals where they’re able to market their products, so, of course, they want to have a great smile. That plays into the cosmetic part of our practice.”

The other factor? High-definition television. “Those two things together have really developed a niche practice with us with a bunch of athletes,” Dr. B adds.

From veneers and whitening to smile makeovers, Dr. B has worked on MVPs of different leagues and sports, from hockey to baseball. But it all started with a soon-to-be Major League Baseball player’s wife, who would become the face of the practice as well as start a chain reaction of referrals.

“It’s been a thriving practice,” he says. “It’s great to do a makeover and then see them on the TV or news the next day.”

But don’t get the wrong idea. Dr. B is set out to do more than just transform one’s smile with procedures such as whitening, veneers or smile makeovers. He wants to help change lives, too. And that all began after a friend introduced him to Chris Powell, who is now the trainer and transformation specialist on “Extreme Makeover.”

“Chris and I got paired up through a friend because we both were in the makeover business; he was training the body, and I was doing the smiles,” Dr. B recalls. “So, we cross-referenced and built our own local makeover team.”

Fast forward through success stories that would catch the attention of national media, and the rest is history. “Extreme Makeover” will be airing its third season, increasing the number of participants from 8 to 17.

“It’s great to see these peoples’ lives change,” Dr. B says. “As they lose weight, as they reach milestones, they gain confidence, and you can just see it. It just glows off them as they go through this process.

“I’m a small part of it with the smiles, but when you put it all together, you just see these people, their potential and where their lives can go from there is radically different than they were 365 days prior,” Dr. B says. “When you can do something by changing their smile that has an impact on their overall self-confidence, their self-worth, their self-esteem, that reward is priceless.”

So just how does Badolato balance various sports teams, “Extreme Makeover,” Studio B Smiles, and an almost 1-year-old son?

“You make time,” Dr. B says. “It’s sometimes challenging, but at the end of the day, it’s totally worth it when you have a lovely wife and an incredible son.”

For more information about Dr. John Badolato and Studio B Smiles, visit studiobsmiles.com.


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A Fruity Fix

Need a quick and inexpensive way to whiten your smile?
Pick up some strawberries and baking soda, and give this a try:

studio b smiles
  1. Crush one strawberry to a pulp.
  2. Mix 1/2 tsp. of baking soda until blended.
  3. Spread mixture onto teeth; leave on for 5 min.
  4. Brush thoroughly with toothpaste to remove berry/baking soda mix.
  5. Voila! A white smile.

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Scottsdale Living Magazine Fall 2012