Is Your Smile Aging You?-Part 2Yellow or dark teeth
Posted Sep 11 2008 5:53pm
Age Change #2—Yellow or dark teeth Why —several reasons. First the outer layer of the tooth, enamel is
slightly porous allowing food and liquids such as tea, coffee, and wine to be
absorbed into the sub-surface areas. Second, the enamel starts to thin with wear slowing the inner yellowier
dentin layer of the tooth to show more. Lastly,
the innermost portion of the tooth, the pulp, shrinks in size leaving a more
layer. Note: none of these changes can
be improved with a professional cleaning or brushing alone.
How it ages you— Yellow and dark teeth
have been proven in mass questionnaires done by social psychologist to be an
indicator of low socioeconomic status. Sexual attraction is lower and perception of success is diminished.
How to fix it. Bleaching is the answer in many cases—but not
all! Teeth that are yellow tend to
lighten the best, and gray or brown are more difficult. Results vary by the patient, and compliance
is essential. There are several
treatment options with take home Dr. dispensed the most popular. For patients wishing faster results or darker
stains, an in-office session may be recommended. Very mild cases may even be treated with
“over-the-counter” products. The
“tougher” cases or teeth with highly colors may alternatively with more
advanced porcelain restorations or crowns. For those patients who do lighten, periodic touch-up are recommended to
assure that the color does not revert to the previous color.
What it’s like —Modern dentist has several methods available to
lighten and brighten the smile.
made applicator tray can be made in the dental office. These are very thin (0.2 mm) and clear. They are comfortable to wear and are used
once a day for about 30 to 60 minutes. These are no degradation to the existing tooth, or any increased
susceptibility to decay or wear. Some
people experience a short lasting sensitivity to cold that usually quickly
diminishes. Due to the stronger
strengths of the professional systems, the process should be monitored by the
One big advantage of custom trays
is that they can be e-used” once a month to keep the improved color change
intact... Touch-up kits are available
through the dental office.
power lightening—This is great for individuals requiring a faster result, don’t
like the idea of using trays daily, or are starting with a darker color. With these systems the dental office isolates
the teeth from the gums using a special “paint-on” liquid, and applies
incrementally a powerful lightening solution. Some systems are self-activated and some are light activated.
agents—these are highly variable in the way they can be applied. Check with individual manufacter. Typically the solution is not as concentrated
or able to be effectively applied for as long as the professional system. They are best reserved for people not able to
afford the professional systems, or require a minimal color change.
See our photo gallery for more information on veneers,
cosmetics, and gum lifts