About Me

Den's Dental Blog

Hello! My name is Den. This blog is going to cover a range of dental topics. I am not a dentist or a dental nurse but I have recently undergone a lot of dental treatment. This treatment has given me a great insight into the world of dentistry and I would like to share everything I have learnt with you here. Last year, I developed terrible pain in my mouth. I was diagnosed with severe tooth decay. The dentist removed the problem teeth and then inserted false ones in their place. He also whitened my teeth to improve my smile. I hope you find my blog useful.


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Den's Dental Blog

Whitening Your Teeth When Some of Them Might Not Be Entirely Your Own

by Myrtle Banks

You have a number of options when it comes to teeth whitening, but these options become somewhat more limited if your teeth are not entirely your own. Perhaps you have dental implants, a dental crown, or dental veneers. The materials used to construct these prosthetic teeth and teeth coverings do not respond to teeth whitening agents in the same way that natural teeth do. In fact, they generally do not respond at all. This means that while your natural teeth will respond to the whitening treatment, the prosthetic teeth and teeth coverings will stay the same shade as when your dentist installed them. Your natural teeth can become too white, leading to a mismatch of colours. There is also a small chance that your prosthetic teeth and other cosmetic dental work can become damaged. So how do you achieve the desired level of teeth whitening when some of your teeth are not entirely your own?

A Predetermined Shade of White

When your prosthetic teeth were fabricated, your dentist would have chosen the most appropriate colour. The prosthetic teeth were made in a shade of porcelain composite that was designed to match the colour of your natural teeth at the time of installation. It's when you decide that you want all of your teeth to be whiter that the shade of your prosthetic teeth or teeth coverings can become an issue. Your natural teeth might have also become discoloured over time due to the usual culprits, such as the staining agents evident in things like coffee, red wine, nicotine. The natural discolouration of teeth through aging can also play a role. It's just important that you whiten your natural teeth to a shade that matches the colour of your prosthetic teeth.

Teeth Whitening Treatments

Many teeth whitening treatments for home usage require you to use a hydrogen peroxide based whitening agent applied to your teeth via a mouthguard tray. Such a method should not be used if you have any prosthetic teeth. But why is this the case?

  • While the porcelain composite of the artificial teeth will not be affected by the hydrogen peroxide whitening agent, the bonding agent used to attach the prosthesis could potentially be weakened, reducing the lifespan of the prosthesis in question if it becomes destabilised.
  • If your dentist has repaired or reshaped any of your teeth using dental composite restorations (the white material used to create fillings and fix surface imperfections on a tooth), this material could soften after being treated with hydrogen peroxide.
  • This softening could create microscopic cracks, leaving the underlying natural tooth more susceptible to delay.

Please remember that while these outcomes are unlikely, it's not worth the risk when there are other whitening options available.

Whitening Treatments at Home

You can still whiten your teeth at home, but you need a more targeted approach. Use a teeth whitening pen or a solution that comes with a small applicator brush. This allows you to only apply the whitening solution to your natural teeth. You need to be careful to only whiten your natural teeth to the colour of your prosthetic teeth or teeth coverings; otherwise, there will be that unpleasant mismatch of colour.

Whitening Treatments from Your Dentist

If you're concerned, it might be best to receive a whitening treatment from your dentist. They can be more precise in their approach, ensuring that your natural teeth are quickly and safely brought to the same colour as your prosthetic teeth or teeth coverings.

So while having teeth that might not be entirely your own doesn't exclude you from having your teeth whitened, it's important that you do it properly.