It’s a big boost to confidence when you smile and know your teeth are not just clean but white. Unfortunately, there are several reasons – age included – as to why teeth in the natural course of life become stained or lose lustre.
The solution? A dental procedure known as teeth whitening.
What does it do?
Teeth whitening is a procedure in cosmetic dentistry where the natural colour of the teeth is lightened without damaging the tooth surface. Depending on the existing shade of teeth, it does not really aim to make it blinding white but to lighten the surface.
According to Aura Dental, people may think that white is the natural colour of teeth but truth is, this varies. Sometimes, it is yellowish, other times a very dull white. For aesthetic purposes, folks feel better when they have sparkling white teeth.
Why does teeth colour change?
The tooth’s outer layer is called enamel. Beneath it is dentin. Age and regular brushing over time makes the enamel thinner, which is the whiter layer, and the yellowish dentin begins to show up.
Alcohol and smoking can also cause teeth discolouration. Even coffee, tea and other dark beverages lead to staining which changes the colour of enamel. The dark pigments from these beverages attach to the enamel causing it to discolour.
Tar and nicotine from cigarettes are the culprits behind teeth discolouration for smokers. The former is naturally dark, while the latter, when exposed to oxygen, turns yellowish.
Even certain medication like antibiotics can cause teeth discolouration.
What are various teeth whiteners?
So you’ve decided to whiten those pearlies. Is there a single method to doing it? Some toothpaste contain whiteners like polishers and other chemical agents. They can effectively remove stains but do not contain bleach. They can improve the tooth’s colour to the next lighter shade.
Hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide are the two active ingredients for teeth whitening. There are products that come in gel form or strips, purchased over-the-counter. Recently, there are whitening rinses for this purpose.
Otherwise, you can go see a dentist for this procedure and go through several weeks of treatment whether done partly at home, partly at the clinic, or undergo laser whitening.
However way you decide to do the procedure, just remember it is not a forever thing. A dentist should be able to say how long it will last or if it will even work for you.