Teeth Whitening – at Home
What causes teeth to become discoloured?
The natural tooth colour is affected primarily by the ageing process. However, the surfaces of the teeth can be
severely affected and stained by tobacco, coffee, tea, dark berries and other foods.
The teeth can also become discoloured internally as well. The major causes include injuries to the root, too
much fluoride, illness and antibiotics taken during the early years. Teeth whitening or bleaching is very
successful at producing excellent results. However, there are certain cases where some discolourations are found to
be more stubborn and difficult to remove.
Prior to any form of bleaching, it is advisable to visit your dentist for a thorough examination. For instance,
any decay or gum disease needs to be attended to first. Those with receding gums will find that the bleaching
agents may well irritate the exposed root surfaces. Also, the teeth need to be cleaned and any tartar or plaque
must be removed.
Once that is taken care of, your dentist will make dental impressions of both the upper and lower sets of teeth.
Models are then constructed so that a tray (similar to a gum guard) can be fabricated. This tray will fit very
snugly and you will get used to wearing it very quickly. Teeth whitening gel is then prescribed which will
effectively bleach the surface enamel of the teeth.
Your dentist will demonstrate how to place small amounts of the gel into each the tray. You can either wear the
tray for ½ an hour to 2 hours depending on the product prescribed during the day or for the night while you sleep.
Typically, the tray should be used continuously for 5 days or more. This time is entirely dependent on the state of
your teeth to begin with. Your dentist will monitor your progress to ensure your safety and that it is working
Please don't use over the counter products that you administer yourself. It is highly recommended that teeth
whitening is conducted under the supervision of a dentist.
The positive effects of the process will last anywhere from one to three years. You can help by ensuring that
you brush and floss your teeth twice a day. It's also a good idea to have your teeth regularly cleaned
Speak to Dr Papavarnavas about teeth whitening today. He will happily answer any questions or concerns you
Remember, an attractive smile increases self-confidence.