Treatment for white teeth

Written by: Dr. Manuel Antón-Radigales y Valls
Edited by: Top Doctors®

«Everyone wants to be more dark, weigh a few kilos less and have whiter teeth». This phrase may be as questionable as you want, but it is undeniable that white teeth we like everyone. The bad is when, for various reasons, the smile does not respond to the wishes of its carrier. Let's see those causes and their possible solutions:


The teeth can be stained by several factors: by tar of tobacco, by some medication, by some food or by the presence in the mouth of certain types of bacteria that, although they are not dangerous for the health, stain the teeth. These spots are eliminated with a simple oral cleaning , simple technique, painless and innocuous. If the cause is not corrected and the spots reappear, the cleaning is repeated.


Chemical teeth whitening

It can also happen that the teeth have a normal color but the smile appears obscured because they are crowded and project shadows, or because they are small and leave spaces between them. This can be resolved by an orthodontics that repositions the teeth or by restorative techniques that modify their shape and size.


The teeth can be stained by various factors



Another possibility is that the teeth are white, but not as much as one would wish. Here the solution can be a chemical teeth whitening , in which a gel that gives off oxygen, a gas that produces the bleaching effect, is applied to the teeth.. For oxygen to come off you have to heat the gel, and that can be done in two ways:


1. At high temperature: About 60 ° Centigrade, which is applied in clinic by means of a special lamp. The session lasts about an hour, and is usually repeated once or twice. The disadvantages are that the bleaching effect decreases in the following months and during the treatment the teeth experience a discomfort that, in sensitive people, can become very painful. Even so, these discomforts disappear spontaneously in twenty-four or forty-eight hours without any residual injury being observed.


2. At low temperature: 37 ° C, body temperature. The gel is placed in a transparent cover and it fits over the teeth and stays for one or several hours, depending on the type of gel used. With the cover set you can talk and live a normal life (except eating) so the patient applies the treatment at home, daily, for three or four weeks. It requires some perseverant collaboration on the part of the patient, but the whitening effect is permanent and the treatment is painless. Only extremely sensitive people may notice some discomfort, generally tolerable. It is not uncommon to combine the two treatments, first the one done in the clinic and then the one done at home.


The bad thing about chemical whitening is that its effect depends on the type of tooth. Some patients get very obvious results and others more modest. Strictly speaking, they are only useful to achieve a few degrees of white in the teeth of normal color.


Coating the teeth

When the color of the teeth is very dark ( antibiotic stains , devitalized or traumatized teeth, elderly people ...) or when the intended color is spectacularly white, that is, when the difference between the color of which is part and the one you want to achieve is large, chemical whitening is inoperative. In these cases you have to resort to cover the tooth with a white material that hides the unwanted color. This can also be done in two ways:


1. Carving the tooth: Dental sheaths (also called crowns) completely cover the tooth, and it must be worn to the shape of a stump, on which the sleeve fits. Dental veneers or facets only cover the visible face of the tooth, the anterior, so that the carving is limited to this face. The dentist cuts the teeth, takes a measurement from the mouth and sends it to the laboratory; there the piece is made and sent back to the dentist, who puts it in its place. They are usually made in porcelain. This material can not be retouched in the mouth, so once placed any modification or fix a flaw has no solution but to eliminate the restoration and replace it with a new. On the other hand, the carving is an irreversible mutilation. The tooth is carved for life as, unlike other tissues, it is not able to regenerate.


2. Without carving the tooth : This technique is based on materials known as composites , which come in the form of paste and are placed, adhere and shape directly on the tooth, setting them with a special light. It is not necessary to wear the teeth, the procedure is painless and normally does not require anesthesia. It usually ends in a single session that can last up to three or four hours, including some breaks, if you have to treat several teeth. The main advantage of this technique is its innocuousness : the tooth does not suffer any aggression and at any moment you could remove everything done and leave the teeth as they were before starting the treatment. In addition, composites can be touched directly in the mouth, so that modifications or repairs in case of deterioration are usually simple and do not force to redo the entire restoration.


These two techniques have the added advantage that in addition to changing the color they allow modifying the shape, size and, within certain limits, the position of the teeth.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

By Dr. Manuel Antón-Radigales y Valls

Pioneer and reference for Dental Aesthetics, forty year developing non-invasive techniques to improve the appearance of the smile. He has given more than a hundred courses in Spain, Europe and America, as well as numerous conferences, seminars and participation in national and international conferences, published over twenty articles, some of them featuring original and innovative techniques. He is lecturer at several Spanish and foreign universities and a member of numerous scientific societies and received the gold medal for scientific merit of the Madrid College of Dentists and the gold medal of the Center for Dental Studies Valencia. Private practice in Madrid.

*Translated with Google translator. We apologize for any imperfection

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