Tooth Whitening, also known as Dental Bleaching, is a common procedure in general dentistry. The outer layer of a tooth is called the enamel. The color of natural teeth is created by the reflection and scattering of light off the enamel, combined with the color of the dentin under it. Your genes affect the thickness and smoothness of the enamel.
Every day, a thin coating (pellicle) forms on the enamel and picks up stains. Tooth enamel also contains pores that can hold stains. The most common reasons for teeth to get yellow or stained are:
- Drinking dark-colored liquids such as coffee, cola, tea and red wine.
- Habits such as tobacco chewing, pan and smoking.
- Not maintaining adequate oral hygiene of the teeth.
There are different methods available for whitening teeth, such as home bleaching, office bleaching. Home bleaching is used where teeth are minimally discoloured and is carried out by the patient. However it is a slow process and requires multiple applications over several days. In office bleaching is carried out in the dental clinic usually requiring a single visit and the teeth remain whiter longer.