In this day and age, teeth whitening is a common practice performed among both youth and adults alike. From brightening a smile to become more photogenic, to lightening the teeth to look more professional in the workplace, teeth whitening can be used to achieve a variety of results.
But what about for those with crowns? Will teeth whitening work on those who have artificial dental work already in place?
Teeth Whitening and Crowns
Dental Crowns and Veneers
Crowns and veneers are both types of dental work. Crowns cover the caps of teeth and can be put in place to prevent further decay, to replace the tooth to its original size, or for a multitude of other purposes. Veneers cover the face of the tooth, and can be installed for health-related or aesthetic purposes. Both crowns and veneers are usually made of porcelain.
Teeth Whitening Systems
All teeth are covered by a thin layer of enamel. This enamel is porous, and while brushing your teeth and receiving professional dental scraping both work to remove plaque buildup, material can gather beneath the surface after passing through the transparent enamel. Teeth whitening systems work to remove stains by penetrating the porous enamel of your teeth and creating a chemical reaction, thus bleaching the stains beneath the surfaces. This eventually leads to whiter teeth.
Will it Whiten Crowns?
The answer is generally “no”. Because crowns are made of porcelain, a non-porous material that contains no enamel, they will not have the same chemical reaction as the natural tooth, therefore not causing them to bleach. If teeth whitening agents are used on a mouth that contains both natural teeth and crowns, the natural teeth will often whiten in color while the crowns will stay their same shade.
The question remains: what can be done?
Replace the Crowns
While dental work will prevent any further harm to your teeth, it does usually deteriorate over time. If you have crowns in your mouth but are hoping to whiten your teeth, speak to your dentist to see if it’s possible to replace your crowns if they’ve gone through a lot of wear and tear. Often it’s a simple process to replace the old ones with newer, whiter ones, allowing you to then whiten your natural teeth to have a matching smile.
If you do go through this process, be sure to vigorously maintain your newly whitened teeth to ensure that you won’t have to replace your crowns again in the near future.
Avoid Other Claims
While it’s usually the case that teeth whiteners do not work on porcelain crowns or veneers, some claim that they use a different process that will actually work wonders on your teeth. As these processes have never been made public, it’s extremely important to be wary when dealing with such claims in order to protect your health and save your time and money.
As the process gains more fame, teeth whitening everyday becomes more popular among the general population. But for those with porcelain crowns or other dental work, it’s important to realize that you’ll need to replace your fixtures before whitening in order to give you the brightest smile in the room.
Dr. Kent Bladen is the owner of B. Kent Bladen, DDS. He and his staff work hard to ensure that you and your family have a bright and healthy smile that you’re happy with. For information on some of our other services, please visit http://www.dentistwestjordanut.com/services-west-jordan-dentist/