Some teeth due to being traumatized or being root canal treated can become very deeply discoloured and sometimes they become even black in colour. This can seriously effect the patients self confidence as often these discoloured teeth are front teeth which are on show when smiling. Traditional teeth whitening methods such as Laser whitening or home teeth whitening systems will not whiten such heavily discoloured teeth as the discolouration originates deep inside the tooth. For such discoloured teeth, some dentists prescribe porcelain veneers or crowns to hide the deep tooth discolouration. The problem with porcelain veneers and crowns is that extensive irreversible tooth tissue reduction is necessary which may result in the earlier loss of the tooth in the long term. However now there is internal tooth whitening and inside/outside tooth whitening techniques available to whiten such teeth.
At Pearl dental clinic we are pleased to offer internal tooth whitening and inside/outside tooth whitening methods which whiten very discoloured teeth from the inside where the discolouration originates. During the assessment visit, we check the discoloured tooth to make sure the tooth is a good candidate for internal tooth whitening and we usually take a small x-ray to make sure the tooth has no infection associated with it.
Using the dental microscope we remove some filling and root filling material from the back of the tooth and create an access area for the whitening gel. The tooth would still look normal from the outside. We then either place whitening gel directly over the root canal space (Internal tooth whitening) or create a special whitening tray that has access to the inside of the tooth (Inside/Outside whitening) for the whitening gel to be placed inside the tooth.
After a week of internal whitening we then reassess the tooth and if necessary continue with further internal whitening or inside/outside whitening until the shade of the discoloured tooth has become as white as the neighbouring teeth. Finally we restore the tooth with a white filling.
Internal whitening results usually last for many years but just like other teeth whitening methods, internal whitening may have to be repeated every few years to top-up the whitening results.
Internal whitening and inside/outside whitening treatments do not always work but in the right hands they are usually very successful treatments. If the internal whitening treatment does not work, a porcelain veneer or crown can be made instead. However its better to try the more conservative internal whitening treatment first to preserve tooth tissue.