Teeth whitening is the most popular aesthetic dental treatment. Nowadays people are more interested in whitening their teeth for an attractive smile.
The cause of dental stains should be examined for better results. There are two types of stains.
1. Extrinsic stain
2. Intrinsic Stain
Extrinsic stain means the accumulation of chromatogenic substance on the tooth surface. This type of stain occurs due to tobacco use, poor oral hygiene, ingestion of chromatogenic food and drinks. With time this type of stain becomes darker and persistent. It can be removed by oral prophylaxis and bleaching if required.
An intrinsic stain is a stain that occurs interior of the teeth. This type of stains caused by aging, enamel micro-cracks, tetracycline medication, excessive fluoride ingestion, severe jaundice in infancy, dental caries, thinning of the enamel layer, traumatized tooth, etc. Intrinsic stains cannot be removed by oral prophylaxis. Only bleaching of teeth is required for a good result.
Vital tooth bleach:
This procedure is done under complete control of the dentist. When the desired shade achieved, the procedure is stopped. High concentrated teeth whitening agent is used. The wanted result can be achieved in a single sitting, but more sitting may be needed for better results. A 35% concentration of hydrogen peroxide is used for bleaching.
This procedure involves a dentist-supervised night guard and carried out by patients themselves. It is self-administrated by the patient. Low cost, fewer side effect and safer. It is a commonly practiced technique as whitening the teeth at home is possible. Bleaching gel is applied in the teeth along with custom-fabricated mouthguard is worn at night for at least 2 weeks. The patient should be instructed to brush his/her teeth prior to the application of the tray. The patient often forgets to do this procedure and is technically sensitive. Accurate concentration should be used as recommended by the dentist, otherwise, it may cause teeth sensitivity, gingival irritation, nausea, and throat irritation. 10% to 20% of carbamide peroxide is used.
Over the counter bleaching products are increased in recent days. These products are self-applied and widely used. It includes low concentrated whitening agents, whitening strips, whitening dentifrices, etc. It is recommended to use two weeks twice per day.
Non-vital tooth bleach:
In this technique, whitening agents are sealed in the pulp and activated by heat or light. This procedure is repeated until the desired result is achieved.
Macro abrasion is used for the removal of localized surfaced stains. Composite finishing bur is used to remove the surface defect. The polishing is done.
Hollywood smile makeover is one of the popular teeth aesthetic treatments. In this procedure, teeth are corrected in perfect shape, size and porcelain veneer is placed over the teeth. This gives perfectly aligned attractive teeth.
These are some teeth whitening techniques practiced widely. According to the type of stain, type of defect, teeth whitening technique may differ. Oral hygiene maintenance is the key to preserve the result.
Author: Dr. M. Jovitta, Pediatric /Preventive Dental Health Expert,
Jerush Dental & Facial Corrective Centre
Click to read Dr. Jovitta’s other blogs: “Why flossing is important” “Brushing Techniques” “Bad breath or Halitosis” “Smoking and Oral Health”, Tooth replacement options for missing teeth” “Dental pain & Root Canal Procedure”