What is teeth whitening?

Teeth whitening (or teeth bleaching) is among the most popular aesthetic dentistry methods that helps enhance and brighten your smile by effectively removing stains and discolorations on your teeth. Nowadays, Teeth whitening is getting cheaper and easier to access. Teeth whitening is not one-time process. Whitening is repetitive procedure that needs to be established from time to time to maintain the brightness of your teeth.

Why do your teeth need bleaching?

While new dentin gets darker because teeth repair themselves, the enamel gets thinner due to physical wear. Although it is the inner dentin, not the enamel (outer coat), turns yellow, the teeth looks discolored from the outside. The reason is that the yellow dentin reflects through enamel, which make the teeth visibly yellow. This kind of discoloration called “Intrinsic” discoloration

Causes of intrinsic discoloration:

  • Traumatic injury
  • Medication usage such as tetracycline. Children take tetracycline in their young ages experience heavily teeth discoloration
  • Hereditary that determines the innate teeth color you were born with
  • Inevitable aging process of humans cause teeth to gradually turn yellow

When the outer portion of the teeth get stained, it is called “extrinsic” discoloration. Extrinsic discoloration is resulted from daily intake such as coffee, wine, colored food or smoking.

Smoking habit cause teeth discoloration

 

How teeth whitening works?

Whitening treatments can be effective on both extrinsic and intrinsic staining

The bleaching mechanism is that carbamide peroxide and/or hydrogen peroxide in disinfectant breaks “stubborn” stain/discoloration down into minor fracture, which helps your teeth brighter