Tooth whitening is a procedure that involves placing a bleaching agent on teeth to alter their colour. Tooth discolouration can occur for a variety of reasons, but is most commonly a result of extrinsic (external) staining of tooth structure from food and drinks such as black tea, coffee and red wine. Smoking may also be a contributing factor. It is important to note that tooth whitening cannot fix all types of tooth discolouration; your dentist will advise you accordingly.
There are two types of tooth whitening. The first is known as ‘in-house’ whitening. Tooth whitening, in this case, is done while you are in the chair at the dentist and provides instant results. The procedure involves the application of a whitening agent to the teeth followed by the use of a light source that activates it. Alternatively, you can opt for a ‘take-home’ whitening kit. This involves the fabrication of custom trays that are moulded to fit your teeth specifically and the provision of relevant information and materials to ensure you can appropriately carry out the whitening process at home. A thorough dental check-up should be carried out prior to commencing tooth whitening to ensure your mouth is healthy.