My daughter recently had her braced removed and there were spots on her teeth. We talked to our dentist about it and she suggested we whiten her teeth with teeth whitening. She referred us to a colleague of hers that does Zoom Whitening because she knew my daughter was embarrassed about her teeth and that people would want to see them now that her braces are off. We agreed and went to the other dentist. They did the Zoom Whitening, but now her teeth look even more splotchy. Did this dentist do the Zoom Whitening incorrectly?
It is not that the dentist you went to did the Zoom Whitening incorrectly as much as she didn’t understand the principles behind the teeth whitening process or what the white spots represented on your daughter’s teeth.
Zoom Whitening is a very effective way of whitening teeth. However, teeth whitening, no matter what type, is not a good option for uneven teeth. The reason for that is the whitening process will work across the teeth evenly. White spots will be whitened along with the remainder of her teeth, which means the difference will still be there, but just brighter.
Something else to be aware of is that teeth whitening will only work on natural tooth structure. If your daughter were to have something like a dental crown and then decided to whiten her teeth, her teeth would whiten but not the dental crown. That would have to be replaced to get it to match.
Dealing with White Spots on Teeth
Most of the time, white spots on teeth after braces means that your daughter has some decalcification. These are pre-cursors to tooth decay. It is hard to get those teeth thoroughly brushed with all those metal wires and brackets. Someone has to be super diligent and persistent in getting between everything. This is one of the reasons I recommend Invisalign to anyone responsible enough to keep up with removable orthodontics. Invisalign allows you to take off the aligners and brush your teeth as you normally would, making it easier to do the work properly.
So, how do you fix these decalcification spots? The first thing I would try is a product called Tooth Mousse. This is something you can put on her teeth that will (hopefully) re-mineralize the teeth.
If that doesn’t work, then I recommend dental bonding. With this procedure, a cosmetic dentist will gently remove the decalcified spot and then use composite bonding in to fill in the area while matching the teeth.
One word of warning. This is not a procedure that can be done by your average family dentist. You will need to find a dentist experienced with it and artistic. I would ask to see before and after pictures of bonding cases they have done to get an idea of how good they are at matching tooth structure.
This blog is brought to you by Midtown Manhattan Dentist Dr. Marianna Faber.