TOOTH WHITENING PATIENT INFORMATION
What is tooth whitening?
It’s a bleaching process that lightens discolorations of enamel and dentine. The system uses a mild solution retained in a
custom-fitted tray that is worn over your teeth. What causes tooth discoloration?
There are many causes. The most common include aging, consumption of staining substances (coffee, tea, colas, tobacco),
trauma, nerve degeneration and old restorations. During tooth formation, consumption of tetracycline or excessive fluoride
may also cause tooth discoloration. Who may benefit from tooth whitening?
The vast majority of people will benefit from tooth whitening. However, there are some cases where the treatment may not be
effective. A dentist may determine viable candidates for the process through a thorough oral examination and diagnosis.
Darker stains, such as those caused by antibiotics, may take longer to respond to treatment. The degree of whiteness will vary
from patient to patient, depending on the structure of the teeth, the number of applications and/or the duration of time that the
system is used. Is the process safe?
YES! Research and clinical studies indicate that whitening teeth with Carbamide Peroxide or Hydrogen Peroxide under the
supervision of a dentist is safe for teeth and gums. In fact, many dentists consider this whitening process the safest cosmetic
dental procedure available today. How does it work?
The whitening gel is placed in a thin bleaching tray that fits over your teeth. As the active ingredient in the gel is broken down,
oxygen enters the enamel and dentine and bleaches the coloured substances. The structure of the tooth is not changed; only the
tooth colour is made lighter. How long does it take?
Results are usually seen after the first application. Maximum results generally occur when the process is continued for 10-14
nights. Are there any side effects?
Some people experience temporary increased tooth sensitivity to cold during the treatment. These symptoms disappear within
1-3 days after interruption or completion of the treatment. How long do the results last?
The teeth will always be lighter than they once were; however, some patients may need a tooth whitening “touch-up” for 1-2
days, once or twice a year. In order to maintain the whitest tooth shade possible, it is best to avoid substances like coffee, tea,
red wine and tobacco. THE PROFESSIONAL WHITENING PROCESS
1. During your diagnostic visit, your dental professional will take impressions of your teeth. This allows your dentist to
make a custom gel-holding appliance called a whitening tray.
2. At your second visit, you will be fitted with a take-home whitening kit. You will also be given specific instructions on
how to administer the gel and how often to wear your tray.
3. Follow the take-home directions and those of your dentist. Continue to maintain proper oral hygiene through brushing
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