Wednesday, August 18, 2010


Though we live in a society where in pearl white shiny teeth are regarded, most of us don't have such teeth which is why tooth whitening or bleaching has come into limelight in this modern age.

Essentially, teeth whitening can be seen as another way to stop the aging process. In the same way that you use moisturizing creams to stop wrinkles and hair dye to keep away the gray, various teeth whitening products such as toothpastes, polishes and adhesive strips are being used to make teeth whiter and more youthful.

There are plenty of teeth whitening options available, so choose one that is right for you and do the best you can to bleach away stains and natural color changes.Your dentist will be right person to help you choose the right way of getting your teeth bleached.

Medically speaking, teeth whitening is a safe procedure so long as you have it professionally done or pay close attention to packet instructions.

But of course our teeth do stain due to some external factors that includes:

Foods or drinks: Coffee, Tea, Cola, Wine and some fruits and vegetables and smoking and chewing tobacco can stain teeth.

Poor dental hygiene: Improper brushing and flossing to remove the plaque and stain producing substances like coffee and tobacco can also cause tooth discoloration.

Disease: Several diseases that affect enamel (the hard surface of the teeth) and dentin (the underlying material under enamel) can lead to tooth discoloration. Treatments for certain conditions can also affect tooth color. For example, head and neck radiation and chemotherapy can cause teeth discoloration. In addition, certain infections in pregnant mothers can cause tooth discoloration in the infant by affecting enamel development.

Medications: There are some antibiotics like tetracycline and doxycycline that discolor teeth when given to children whose teeth are still developing (before the age of 8). Mouth rinses and washes containing chlorhexidine and cetylpyridinium chloride can also stain teeth. Antihistamines like Benadryl, anti psychotic drugs, and drugs for high blood pressure also cause teeth discoloration.

Dental materials: Some of the materials used in dentistry, such as amalgam restorations, especially silver sulfide-containing materials, can cause a gray-black color to teeth.

Advancing age: As you age, the outer layer of enamel on your teeth gets worn away revealing the natural yellow color of dentin.

Environment: Excessive fluoride either from environmental sources (naturally high fluoride levels in water) or from excessive use (fluoride application, rinses, toothpaste and fluoride supplements taken orally) can cause tooth discoloration.

Genetics: Some people have naturally brighter or thicker enamel than others.

Trauma: For example, damage from a fall can disturb enamel formation in young children whose teeth are still developing. Trauma can also cause discoloration to adult teeth.

Treatment options for teeth whitening varies depending on the cause of discoloration and may also include:

  • Using proper brushing and flossing techniques.

  • Avoid foods and beverages that cause discoloration of teeth

  • Veneers and bondings

  • Using over the counter whitening agents

  • In-home teeth whitening agents purchased from your dentist, In-office whitening procedures.


  1. same comment as above ,aging plays a negligible role.

  2. Is teeth whitening harmful? Somewhere I read that is damages the very teeth.

    1. Not always, but there are some side effects that you might come across like gum irritation and teeth sensitivity after the whitening procedure. Hence it is always advisable to seek a dentist's advice before going for the treatment.