6 months ago
It’s true that yellowish, unevenly coloured teeth is a cause of concern or even embarrassment for some people. But as you grow older, your teeth naturally turn darker. This may be caused by taking a lot of food and drinks with strong colourings like coffee, tea, red wine, or soda. Smoking is another major cause of your teeth turning yellow. Dental treatments like fillings and root canal treatment can also cause teeth discolouration. Tartar, and in extreme cases, tooth decay, can also be the culprit. The most common and approachable solution to this is teeth whitening. Teeth whitening is a way of lightening the colour of your teeth with the use of bleaching methods. This treatment does not remove the enamel from your teeth.
Teeth whitening products contain either carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide, the latter being more common. These ingredients are effective in whitening teeth. As these chemicals break down, oxygen gets into the enamel of your teeth, which is the hard outer surface or covering of your teeth. This process does not damage your enamel. Instead, it’s responsible for lightening the colour of your teeth. The duration of the whitening effect is different for every person and can range from a few weeks or months, up to at least three years. Efficiency also depends on the quality of the whitening treatment used. You can choose to buy over-the-counter bleaching kits you can easily apply and use in the comfort of your own home, or, you can have your dentist do a professional teeth whitening treatment for you. Note that bleaching doesn’t work on crowns, false teeth, veneers, and fillings, even tooth-coloured ones. If you have any of these, your dentist may be able to recommend you to replace your crowns, false teeth, fillings, or veneers with lighter coloured ones.
Teeth whitening done by a professional is safe and recommended. Some people do experience side effects when using teeth whitening kits. These include slight sensitivity of your teeth to hot and cold, tender gums and temporary white patches on your gums. Our Dentists are highly skilled in tooth whitening procedures, they will provide you with all information necessary before and after treatment.
Note that if you have tooth decay or gum disease, you should have it treated first before proceeding with any teeth whitening treatments. There are some instances where teeth whitening isn’t recommended. For example, bleaching can be dangerous for pregnant and breastfeeding women and isn’t recommended to them. Also, it’s against the law for persons under 18 to be treated with a product containing more than 0.1 percent hydrogen peroxide.
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BDS (Hons.) MJDF RCS (Eng), MClinDent (FRP Lond) FICOI, MSc (Dental Implantology)
BDS (Lond) MJDF RCS (Eng)