Can You Whiten a Discolored and Traumatized Tooth?

Posted on: 24 August 2016

Teeth whitening is one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry treatments that most people will opt for today. It enables you to restore your beautiful smile and confidence without undergoing costly dental procedures. If you have a discolored tooth that's traumatised or has undergone surgical treatment in the past, you can have it whitened without any side effects to your dental health. However, the teeth whitening process is different from that performed on vital teeth. Read on to find out more about it.

Definition of a traumatised tooth

A traumatised tooth is any tooth that has undergone any form of injury or trauma before or during orthodontic treatment. Such include the following:

  • A decayed tooth
  • A tooth with a cavity

A decayed tooth or one with a cavity cannot be whitened without receiving the necessary treatment. If the underlying cause of the discoloration in traumatised teeth is not determined, the process of teeth whitening may not be effective in the long run.

Pre-whitening treatment

Before a traumatised tooth is whitened, the necessary orthodontic procedure should be carried out to restore the tooth. The following steps may be followed in undertaking this:

  • Performing an x-ray exam: An x-ray will help determine the extent of damage caused to the tooth so that the necessary treatment can be administered.
  • Determining the suitable treatment:  For a decayed tooth, a root canal treatment may be recommended. A cavity with no decay can be filled without a root canal treatment.

If you want to whiten a tooth that had undergone surgical procedures such as filling and root canal treatment in the past, an x-ray should be performed to ascertain that the filling is intact before proceeding with tooth whitening.

Tooth whitening process

Once the necessary treatment has been administered to the traumatised tooth, the dentist can continue with the tooth whitening treatment. The procedure used to whiten traumatised teeth is known as internal bleaching. Unlike healthy teeth, traumatised teeth have some form of filling on the surface; therefore, they can't be bleached from the outside. The tooth is whitened from inside out.

The process involves making an access hole on the tooth through which the bleach will be applied. The tooth is cemented to prevent the bleaching agent from coming into contact with the pulp. After that, the bleaching agent is applied. The entire process may require more than one dental visit. After the bleaching is complete, your dentist will apply a permanent restoration to cover the tooth dentin and the access hole.

Whitening a traumatised tooth is a complex procedure that requires a professional. Visit a dental clinic to get the tooth treated and whitened by a professional. You will not only get whiter teeth, but also treat the underlying dental problem.