Whiter teeth

Whiter Teeth

Teeth get yellower with age. As the white enamel outer layer gets thinner over time the yellow inner layer of dentine shows through more. If you scrub your teeth with very abrasive toothpastes they will become more yellow as you thin the enamel. Be gentle yet thorough.

On top of this, your teeth become stained from dark drinks like red wine and coffee, and from smoking. Different people have different colour teeth due to genetics, some are luckier than others - choose your parents wisely.

Teeth whitening options

When we talk whitening, we mean lightening by a couple of shades within the normal range, not scary white teeth like a Hollywood actor.

Whitening toothpastes

Are available from supermarkets and chemists. There are a lot of brands that say that they are whitening, however, if your brand doesn’t contain peroxide then it is probably just a gritty paste that is designed to abrade. A peroxide toothpaste will have a small, slow, but visible effect. The longer peroxide is in contact with your teeth, the greater the whitening effect. Therefore brush for a little longer. If using an electric toothbrush, use it very gently for the entire 2-minute timer.

Take home kits available from your dentist

Ready-to-go (10 treatments) Generic-shaped mouth trays, pre packed with hydrogen peroxide for a quick, 15-minute, minimal fuss, whitening. Each kit has 10 upper and lower trays. There are no impressions taken, so no appointment time is required. Generic shaped trays means that not all your teeth may be covered and there may also be some excess gel overflow. If you want to “top-up” you’ll need to buy another box of 10.

Custom trays (14 treatments) We take impressions and make custom whitening trays that fit your teeth exactly. This minimises both the amount of gel that you use and the amount of overflow. Custom trays are often a lot more comfortable to wear and less conspicuous than generic trays. You can purchase another 14 days of custom tray gel.

Custom tray gel is available in 3 strengths: 15min, 2 hour and overnight. Whitening is more effective and even with the slower approach, but if the thought of sleeping while wearing custom trays is too much then try the faster, higher concentration gels. Whitening treatments will need to be “refreshed” every year or so but usually only takes a couple of treatments.

Disadvantages of whitening

Whitening gels do not change the colour of white fillings or porcelain crowns. If you have fillings in your front teeth that have been matched to your present colour, after whitening your teeth you could be up for the extra expense of replacing the now obvious fillings.
Can create teeth sensitivity during whitening treatment.

To maximise your teeth whiteness and brightness:

  • Don’t age, drink dark beverages or smoke
  • Get your teeth professionally cleaned to remove surface stains
  • Use whitening toothpaste
  • Use a dentist-provided home use teeth-whitening kit


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