Tooth whitening has become one of the most popular ways to improve your smile by lightening the existing shade of your natural teeth. This is a simple and effective treatment which can be carried out by your dentist or at home. Tooth whitening is a non-invasive treatment which does not involve drilling or removal of the tooth surface.
There are many reasons why your teeth can become discoloured:
- Drinking tea, coffee or red wine
- Food with strong colourings
- The natural act of ageing
- A tooth which is damaged by trauma
- Some teeth are naturally pigmented or stained as they develop
- Certain medications
Only natural teeth respond to tooth whitening. Crowns, Bridges, Dentures or Implants cannot be whitened.
The outer surface of the tooth is called ‘enamel’. This has tiny microscopic holes which trap everyday stains. Tooth whitening gel is a peroxide based compound which penetrates the holes removing the stains and lightening the teeth.
Prior to undergoing any whitening procedures, we do recommend that you have a full mouth clean and check to ensure your overall oral health is good and that no restorations are required before whitening can be started.
In Surgery Whitening
Whitening can be carried out in the surgery, this way your teeth will be several shades lighter in one to two hours. There are many methods used to achieve whiter teeth whilst in the dental chair, all the methods follow a similar procedure –
Your gums are protected using a rubber coating prior to commencement of treatment. A peroxide based gel is applied to your teeth. The gel will begin to work upon contact with the tooth and is also activated using a bright blue laser light.
Once the treatment is completed, the protective coating and excess gel is removed to reveal whiter and brighter teeth.
A whitening kit, which includes whitening trays and a peroxide based gel are provided to you. This allows you to whiten at your own convenience. Home whitening can take up to 14 days to achieve your desired shade. To begin this process, an impression is taken of your teeth using special dental "putty" in order to produce a mould of your teeth. A special tray is then fabricated and custom made to fit your teeth specifically.
Prior to beginning whitening, our dental professionals will ensure that your trays fit you comfortably and also instruct you on how to whiten your teeth effectively.
Teeth whitening results will vary from person to person. How long your teeth stay white depends on individual diets and good oral health habits ie. brushing, flossing and regular clean and checks.
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