Dental Bleaching is a procedure where by certain bleaching agents are applied to the teeth in order to remove external and internal stains thus leaving the teeth several shades lighter. Various concentrations of hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide are available for this use.
This mode of treatment has solely been developed to lighten teeth in a simple and comfortable manner. It can bring about a dramatic change in almost everyone’s smile by changing a dull smile and yellow teeth to a bright smile with white teeth.
1. Bleaching of healthy teeth is the safest and most conservative cosmetic treatment available for your teeth today.
2. It generally requires no grinding of your teeth.
3. It does not require any anaesthesia and is painless and well tolerated.
4. The time taken for bleaching is relatively less considering the number of teeth that can be done at one sitting.
5. Bleaching works very well even when combined with other cosmetic treatment options to enhance the aesthetics.
6. The cost of bleaching is less when compared to other full mouth cosmetic treatment options.
7. Bleaching does not damage your teeth or change the structure of your teeth, nor does it change the shape or form of your teeth.
Bleaching is basically of two types:
Office Bleach: This is done by your Dentist at the clinic using a higher concentration of bleaching material.
Home Bleach: This is done by yourself at home using bleaching material and a special tray dispensed by your Dentist.
Depending on your type of dental staining and your time restriction, the Dentist will advise either one or a combination of both of them. Your Dentist will polish your teeth and check their current shade.
Office Bleach: After protecting your gums and lips, the dentist will apply the bleaching agent on the teeth to be lightened and leave it there for a specific period of time. Intermittently, your teeth may be exposed to a special light, which will accelerate the bleaching process. Alternatively, you may be given a tray containing the bleaching agent to wear while in the dental office. Each sitting of bleaching done at your Dentist’s office can take between 30-60 minutes. The total number of sittings is usually 3-4, though this can vary depending on the severity of the staining. e.g. Tetracycline staining.
Home Bleach: As part of your combinations bleaching procedure or as an independent procedure you may carry out this type of bleaching at home. This requires you to wear a custom made tray containing a lower concentration of the bleaching agent, dispensed by your Dentist, for a few hours every day. This is generally done during the nights for one to two weeks. Certain materials also allow you to do the bleaching for a lesser period of time twice a day. Your Dentist will tell you which one is suitable for you.
Side-effects of Bleaching are minimal and transient. Beware of over-the-counter bleaching kits available. These can prove to be abrasive to your teeth in the long run and they may do more harm than good.
Your diet and habits will largely determine how long the bleaching effects will last. With good oral hygiene and a close watch on the exposure of your teeth to external stains from tobacco, beverages, etc., your bleached teeth should maintain their colour for a long time. If you choose, regularly touch up sessions can be carried out once in a year to ensure your teeth look their best.