Tooth Whitening and Bleaching
Extrinsic, or external stains are superficial stains found on the surface of the tooth, caused by dental plaque, tars (in tobacco), tannins (in tea and coffee), red wine, coloured foods and frequent use of certain mouthwashes.
Smoking cigarettes also causes unsightly stains on the teeth, which can be extremely difficult to remove.
Extrinsic stains on the tooth’s surface can be removed by a dentist performing a professional scale and clean.
Tooth Whitening & Bleaching
Tooth whitening is a procedure that lightens teeth and helps to remove stains and discolouration, and is by far the most requested and performed cosmetic dental procedure – and the reasons are obvious.
A thin coating forms on your teeth throughout the day, which attracts stains, and it is the tooth’s enamel that contains pores and hold those stains.
A simple tooth whitening procedure can make such a difference to the overall appearance of your smile, the results are very quick, safe, painless and cost-effective, and these days, there is really no excuse for putting up with discoloured teeth.
Darling Dental has partnered with Opalescence, a professional teeth whitener that offers professional results. Safe and effective, Opalescence has been the leader in whitening for over 20 years.
Why choose professional whitening instead of over-the-counter products?
Teaming up with your Dentist is the best way to get the whitening results you want. Your dentist knows your oral health and can make recommendations that will allow you to get the best results in a time frame that works for you. Your dentist can also help you understand how the whitening process works, monitor your progress, and treat any sensitivity issues that may arise.
With so many whitening products on the market and many of them sold over the counter (OTC), it is vitally important to be educated about whitening and the differences between OTC and professionally dispensed whitening products.
Start the conversation about whitening with your Dentist before you make any decisions, to see which professional whitening option is best for you.
Opalescence tooth whitening gel contains PF (potassium nitrate and fluoride). Potassium nitrate has been shown to help reduce sensitivity. Fluoride has been shown to help reduce cavities and strengthen enamel. Together they help to improve the overall health of the teeth.
- Formulated to prevent dehydration and shade relapse
- Four concentrations for treatment flexibility
- Three flavours
- Day or night wear
- Sticky, viscous gel won't migrate to soft tissues
Team up with your dentist and Opalescence to get the bright, white smile you've dreamed of!
Tooth discolouration can also be caused by trauma to the tooth or root canal treatment. The tooth becomes “dead”, meaning that there is no nerve and no blood supply in the core of the tooth, and sometimes blood pigmentation makes the discoloration worse.
Usually a traumatised tooth requires a porcelain crown, however if the tooth structure was not damaged significantly, we can carry out Internal bleaching.
- In the space that was originally occupied by the nerve, called pulp chamber, we drill about 1-2mm into the root canal from the chamber
- A bleaching medicament is placed into the chamber and sealed
- We leave this medicament within the tooth for a certain period of time, after which it may be reapplied
- When the treatment is finished, the medicament is removed and a definite filling is used to close the access cavity
In essence, we are whitening the tooth from inside out, so it is called internal bleaching. Sometimes, even if the tooth is going to be restored with a porcelain crown, internal bleaching is advised if the tooth is too dark, which may affect the resulting shade of the porcelain.
What needs to be done first?
Cavities need to be treated before teeth are whitened, because the whitening solution can penetrate decay and reach inner areas of the tooth, causing sensitivity. Receding gums can cause roots to become exposed, and whitening will not work on exposed tooth roots, because they do not have a layer of enamel. Whitening also does not work on tooth restorations such as crowns or veneers.
So, before beginning the whitening process, you may need to have some other minor dental work taken care of first.
If your teeth are chipped, heavily discoloured, have small gaps between them or are slightly crooked, then veneers may also be an option. As the name suggests, veneers are thin shells that are bonded onto the front of your teeth to effectively hide these problems.