What is tooth whitening (bleaching) ?
It is a tooth whitening process that lightens discoloration of enamel and dentin.
Who may benefit from tooth whitening?
Almost everyone. However, there may be some cases where the treatment may not be effective. In general, good professional cleaning is recommended before tooth whitening. Also, any inadequate existing restorations should be repaired before the bleaching process. Therefore, old restorations usually need replacement after the bleaching process, since the bleaching material affects only the color of the tooth and not that of the restoration.
Furthermore, the greyness of a root canal treated tooth can be disappeared with internal bleaching.
How does it work?
The tooth whitening material is a gel, which is placed over the teeth.
As hydrogen peroxide, the active ingredient in the gel, is broken down, oxygen enters the enamel and dentin and bleaches the colored substances. This process is performed in the dental practice using a special light which accelerates the bleaching, and at home using a special thin bleaching tray, which fits over the teeth.
The combination of the bleaching in the dental clinic and the home bleaching contributes to the long term maintenance of the esthetic result.
Is the process safe?
YES! Research and clinical studies indicate that whitening teeth with hydrogen peroxide under the supervision of a dentist is safe for teeth and gums. Only the tooth color is made lighter, while the structure of the tooth is unchanged.
How long does it take?
Results are often seen after the first application. Ideal results generally occur when the process is continued for 10-14 days.