Tooth Whitening

What is tooth whitening?

Tooth whitening can be a very effective way of lightening the natural colour of your teeth without removing any of the tooth surface. It cannot make a complete colour change, but it can lighten the existing shade.

Why tooth whitening?

Everyone is different; few people have brilliant-white teeth, and our teeth can also become more discoloured as we get older.

Your teeth can also be stained on the surface by food and drinks such as tea, coffee, red wine and blackcurrant. Smoking can also stain teeth.

‘Calculus’ or tartar can also affect the colour of your teeth. Some people may have staining under the surface, which can be caused by certain antibiotics or by tiny cracks in the teeth which take up stains.

Why does it change my tooth colour?

Professional bleaching is the most usual method of tooth whitening.

The ‘active ingredient’ in the product is usually hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. As the active ingredient is broken down, oxygen gets into the enamel on the teeth and the tooth colour is made lighter.

How long does this take?

The total treatment can usually be done within three to four weeks.

First, you will need two or three visits. Your dental team will need to make a mouth guard so we take impressions of your teeth, send this to our laboratory who will create tailored upper and lower mouth guards which we will then fit and instruct usage at your next appointment, you will then continue the treatment at home. This means regularly applying the whitening product over one to four weeks.

However, we now have some new products which means dependent on your needs we may be able to achieve your desired result in as little time as a week.

We as a practice choose this method as it generally has a longer lasting effect for the patient.

How much does tooth whitening cost?

Our prices start from £350 – Speak to your dentist and they will let you know what is available to you.

How long will my teeth stay whiter?

The effects will vary from person to person. Whitening is thought to last up to three years. This is less likely to last as long if you smoke, or eat or drink products that can stain your teeth.

What side effects may occur?

Some people may find that their teeth become sensitive to cold during or after the treatment. Others may have discomfort in the gums, a sore throat or white patches on the gum line. These symptoms are usually temporary and should disappear within a few days of the treatment finishing.

If any of these side effects continue please call the practice.

When might tooth whitening not work?

Tooth whitening can only lighten your existing tooth colour. Also it only works on natural teeth. It will not work on any types of ‘false’ teeth such as dentures, crowns and veneers.

Looking after your teeth once they have been whitened.

You can help to keep your teeth white by cutting down on the amount of food and drinks you have that can stain teeth. Don’t forget, stopping smoking can also help prevent discolouration and staining.

We recommend the following tips to take care of your teeth:

  • brush your teeth last thing at night and at least one other time during the day, with a fluoride toothpaste
  • cut down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks
  • visit your dental team regularly.