What is it?

Tooth whitening lightens teeth and helps to remove stains and discoloration. Whitening is among the most popular cosmetic dental procedures because it can greatly improve how your teeth look. Most dentists perform tooth whitening.

Whitening is not a one-time procedure. It will need to be repeated from time to time if you want to maintain the brighter color.

Reasons For Teeth Whitening

The most common reasons for teeth to get yellow or stained are:

  • Using tobacco
  • Drinking dark-colored liquids such as coffee, cola, tea and red wine
  • Not taking good care of your teeth

Teeth whitening can also be done on stains in the inner surfaces of teeth, However, it has excellent results with stains on outer surfaces only.

Is not a one time procedure, can be from time to time if needed or if the patient complains of re-staining of teeth.

How Is It Done?

Whitening is done usually by two techniques.

1. At the office/clinic:

This procedure is done by using a special chemical applied to the tooth surface and then activated by using a special light. The procedure may take a minimum of 30 minutes to a     maximum of 60 minutes depending on the condition.

2. Home treatment:

This procedure involves a two paste system with guidelines. It is easy to use and can be done at home once directed by the dentist. Also included within the pack is a brightness scale which helps identifying the right color as per patient need.

Follow Up:

  • If you find that your gums are white or sore, follow up with your dentist.
  • Whitening is not a permanent solution. The stains will come back. If you smoke or consume a lot of staining foods or drinks, you may see the whiteness start to fade in as little as one month. If you avoid these sources of staining, you may not need another whitening treatment for 6 to 12 months.


Whitening is unlikely to cause serious side effects, although some people’s teeth may become more sensitive for a short while.