What's the difference between teeth whitening at the dentist and over-the-counter whitening products?

Home whitening products are typically not as strong as those administered by dental professionals. When compared with professional whitening solutions, home use products may require additional time and applications and may not whiten teeth by as many shades. Whitening products administered by a dental professional can also be divided into two categories: solutions that are applied in-office under direct supervision of a dental professional, and those that are provided for take-home use. Solutions that are applied in-office are the strongest and whiten teeth significantly in the shortest period of time. Those that are provided for take-home use are also strong, but designed for overnight application using a tray that is custom-fitted for your teeth.

I had some fillings done back in July, and have been back to have them readjusted. Since then I have developed jaw pain. One of the fillings was a pulp cap, and may need a root canal down the line as the filling was deep and very close to the nerve. Could this be the cause of my jaw pain? My dentist also thinks I clench my teeth in my sleep but I didn’t have any problems prior to the fillings.

The jaw pain you are having could be due to grinding, but could also be due to the deep cavity that was filled. If it’s coming from the tooth, you may need that root canal treatment sooner. A pulp cap may not always work with large cavities. If it’s from grinding at night, you will want to get a night guard to reduce the jaw pain. Unfortunately, it really requires a physical exam and probably x-rays to pinpoint where the pain is coming from.

I have a lot of teeth anxiety because I am a hypochondriac. My gums don’t bleed, I brush my teeth regularly but I feel like my tooth is loose but it wiggles only a tiny bit when I touch it. Will touching it regularly make it loose?

Healthy teeth with healthy gums and bone support do not move easily. However, they can still move with enough force, such as in the case of braces. If you have a history of gum disease or bone loss then they may move more easily. In general, we do not recommend touching your teeth with your fingers except when you are flossing. It could introduce bacteria and viruses from your fingers or finger nails to your oral cavity.

What are the benefits of using a laser for gum contouring?

Gum contouring with a soft-tissue laser versus a scalpel can result in quicker healing times, reduced need for stitches or sutures, and reduced risk of bacterial infection after the procedure. This is largely due to the fact that the laser cauterises the incision immediately, dramatically reducing bleeding during and after treatment.