Q: My pearly whites have lost their luster. How can I get the gleam back?

Q: My pearly whites have lost their luster. How can I get the gleam back?

A: A lifetime of drinking soda, coffee, tea and red wine — along with the natural aging process — does take its toll on your teeth.

Fortunately, says Avon Lake dentist Marie Simon, there are ways to brighten your smile — or completely change it. “Whitening is the way to start,” she says. “There are a variety of over-the-counter products available in varying degrees of strength, but it can take four to six weeks to see results with them. I recommend that whitening be done by a dental professional. That way, you’re guaranteed to see an improvement in just one office visit.” As a follow-up, your dentist can also provide an at-home kit tailor-made for your mouth.

For patients wishing to completely change their look, Simon suggests the application of veneers, wafer-thin facing that’s bonded to the front of the tooth. “The wonderful thing about veneers is that they hide wear and tear,” she says. “They’re durable, stain-resistant and available in a color that will give your mouth a fresh, natural look.”

Marie Simon, D.D.S., specializes in cosmetic and implant dentistry.

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