Can yellow teeth be whitened? Yes, it can be done. Whether the yellowing is caused by genetics, environmental factors, or a combination, whitening can help improve your smile.
Teeth can be whitened using over-the-counter products or undergoing professional whitening procedures. The degree of correction depends on the type of stains on the teeth.
Bleaching can remove dark stains from teeth, but the effect is less marked on the biting edge, where the dentin shows through. The bleaching effect is most noticeable on the all-enamel portion of the tooth, and the biting edge and gum line are the fastest to lighten. This makes the biting edge of the tooth reach its maximum whiteness, and the gum line continues to lighten.
Although teeth whitening can help remove many minor stains, it is not a permanent fix. Bleaching will only improve the color of your teeth for a month, and you may notice some staining after a month. However, if teeth whitening has caused side effects, your dentist will be able to show you a shade guide that will help you decide what would work best for you.
Tartar buildup can cause the teeth to turn yellow. Calculus is the primary cause of gum disease, so you must visit a dentist for assistance when you notice yellow teeth.
Smoking/ chewing tobacco can also stain the teeth and make them bright. Tobacco, for instance, contains nicotine and tar, two compounds that attach to the white tooth enamel. These chemicals are colorless until they mix with oxygen. The result is a yellowish surface stain. The second type of staining affects dentin, which is the soft tissue underneath the tooth’s enamel. As a result, the outer layer of enamel becomes thinner and more prone to showing through.
In many cases, teeth whitening methods will be ineffective in improving yellow teeth because the cause is often deeper. Regular dental cleanings can remove tartar, a common cause of yellowing teeth. Teeth whitening treatments do not treat these underlying issues. Visit a dentist for an assessment if you have yellow teeth that cannot be whitened with over-the-counter products.
You can whiten your teeth in two ways–in-office and take-home. In-office whitening is the most recommended because it is done under the dentist’s supervision.
The professional teeth whitening in Ellicott City, MD, involves the application of hydrogen peroxide to your teeth. The whitening agent combines a high-intensity light to hasten the whitening process. The procedure is done in two to three 15-minute sessions, depending on the stage of discoloration.
You can get take-home whitening kits designed by our dentist. These trays are customized and help maintain the whitening results at home.
Cosmetic whitening from the drug store can also remove the stains. They require a little more effort but are less drastic than in-office whitening. A dentist’s trays fit your mouth better than OTC trays, which are more likely to cause sensitivity.
Teeth whitening results last anywhere from six months to a year, depending on your lifestyle and diet. The whitening effect is also subject to the foods and drinks that stain the teeth.
Proper dental hygiene (brushing, flossing, and deep cleaning) is the best way to keep your teeth white because plaque can cause the teeth to appear yellow. However, watching your foods and beverages is crucial because some of them, like tea and coffee, can cause the teeth to stain.
Tooth sensitivity can be a common complication of teeth whitening. Most sensitivity is temporary due to an ill-fitting mouthpiece tray or the tooth bleaching agent.
You may feel uncomfortable for several days, so avoid hot or cold foods until you feel more comfortable with your mouth. The sensitivity usually subsides after 48 hours, but if it persists for longer, you should seek medical attention.
Visit our dentist in Ellicott city at Julian Center for Comprehensive Dentistry for more information about teeth whitening and what you can expect.