Ever since I was off my orthodontic treatment back in 2005, I have been religiously caring for my (then) newly-straightened teeth by flossing and brushing several times a day. Additionally I also have an in-home whitening kit that I got from my dentist in New York, and I’ve been using that for many years until recently I finally got down to the last bit so I went to The Dental Studio at Paragon to seek new alternatives in the teeth whitening department.
I don’t know how many people realize this, as we get older our teeth get darker – partly due to our getting older physically age-wise, and also caused by the foods we eat and drink, as well as by other habits such as smoking. Drinking tea (which I do), coffee (which I don’t, but I know many people do), dark juices, red wine and other foods that have strong colors can have an effect on the overall shade of our teeth. All these contribute to our teeth appearing really dull so teeth whitening is a very important part of maintaining one’s overall appearance. IMO, yellow stained teeth is NOT attractive and it is a huge turn-off! Bright white teeth can make anyone look instantly years younger.
At The Dental Studio, the teeth whitening services offered are in-chair treatment (meaning you get your teeth whitened there under supervision) and take-home whitening kit. The in-chair treatment costs S$1070-S$1284, while the take-home kit is S$535. With in-chair treatment, the results are fairly immediate while the take-home kit requires more commitment – namely, 15-minute session daily and continuously for about two weeks or so.
I wanted the in-chair treatment so Dr. Tan Su Wee, one of the dental surgeons at The Dental Studio, reviewed my teeth and evaluated the current shade. She advised that after the in-chair treatment, most patients will achieve results of three to four shades brighter.
Here’s the chart that she used to determine the original teeth color and to show patients what the result will look like when it’s several shades brighter. As you can see clearly here, B1 is the best and most optimal shade while C4 is….. I don’t know what to say other than if anyone’s teeth is that color, they need to get teeth whitening treatment STAT! -__-
When Dr. Tan placed the color chart next to my teeth, she informed me that my teeth color was already somewhere between B1 and A1.
O_o?! In other words, my teeth were already at the maximum brightness/whiteness level so there was no need to whiten my teeth.
Unconvinced, I asked her to evaluate again because I was rather bent on getting my teeth whitened; I had noticed a yellowish cast close to the gums and it was bothering me, so I thought that a one-off in-chair whitening treatment would take care of that. I learned from Dr. Tan that generally Asians have a slightly yellowish-greyish tone on teeth enamels and that’s part of our genetic makeup (an example she also used for contrast was how generally Indians and Africans have exceptionally white teeth, and again that’s also part of their genetic makeup).
Dr. Tan showed me that my teeth were indeed of the B1/A1 shade already. To address the slight yellowish cast closer towards the gum, she suggested the take-home whitening kit instead as a booster and for general maintenance.
An impression of both my top and bottom teeth were taken so that she could make a set of dental trays for me with the take-home whitening teeth. This looked kinda uncomfortable but it wasn’t, in fact the purple clay-thingie tasted like grape jelly and the process of taking impression took only a few seconds.
The dental trays are made of thin plastic and it would hug my teeth perfectly when I use the Opalescence take-home whitening kit (S$535). Basically the kit contains 4 tubes of clear gel (the bleaching agent); squeeze a tiny amount into the dental trays and wear them for 15 minutes every night after brushing teeth, continue doing so for two weeks and gradually teeth will be whitened. For my purpose, since my teeth are already in the B1/A1 shade, this procedure is meant for daily maintenance. But for first time users, more dramatic results can be obtained and you will see teeth color change from dull to bright, stained to white(r).
My previous take-home kit from New York is similar, except that the dental trays were made of thicker plastic – which sometimes caused a gag reaction or cut into my gums if I wasn’t careful. In comparison, I found this set from The Dental Studio easier and more comfortable to use because the plastic is thinner, softer and more pliable. Plus, my previous kit had to be left on for an hour while this one only need to be worn for just 15 minutes. Shorter time = more convenient for me.
Since I was already at The Dental Studio, I took the opportunity to get my teeth cleaned (S$129-S$214) at the same time. Might as well, right? Going to the dentist has never been on anyone’s top list of favorite activities and even though I’d been lucky that my previous dentist in NYC was extremely gentle, I’m happy to report that Dr. Tan at The Dental Studio was equally gentle and efficient – making the cleaning process a breeze. It was comfortable and when I experienced a bit of sensitivity here and there, she stopped and applied numbing gel on those affected areas before continuing.
Whaaaaaaattttt!!!? I had never experienced such TLC before at any other dental offices EVER! I was very impressed and immensely grateful. So much so that I made an appointment on behalf of my mom and would soon be sending her over to get Dr. Tan check out her teeth too (I suspect my mom has periodontitis and kept ignoring proper treatment, maybe due to fear of potential discomfort and the pain that might come with the treatment). I am confident that Dr. Tan or any of the other professional dental surgeons at The Dental Studio will take good care of my mom and her teeth.
Anyhoo, after getting my teeth cleaned I was sent home with a goodie bag containing some oral care items. Lest you think I was getting a preferential treatment, this goodie bag is given to all The Dental Studio patients and I find that to be such a thoughtful gesture! I suppose for most people after getting teeth work done, their teeth would be sensitive so the oral care items are soft toothbrush, toothpaste for sensitive teeth and mouthwash.
I also got this nifty product called Tooth Mousse which sounds super cute! I’m supposed to use this at night before going to bed, it’s basically calcium and fluoride cream that’s applied topically and directly over teeth to strengthen the enamels as well as reduce sensitivity. My teeth did experience slight sensitivity the next couple days after using the whitening kit (I am staggering the usage and use it every other evening), so on evenings when I don’t use the whitening kit I use Tooth Mousse instead.
All in all, I was really happy with The Dental Studio even though I ended up not getting the in-chair whitening treatment that I had intended. However, the take-home whitening kit is working out just as well for me. I think the prices there are reasonable as well (if I remember correctly my previous take-home kit from NY was about US$900+ including the custom impression; The Dental Studio’s Opalescence take-home whitening kit is S$535 and it includes GST).
The Dental Studio
290 Orchard Road
Tel: +65 6836 0050 (24 Hour Hotline)