My daughter had braces for almost three years. When they were removed, we noticed white spots on her teeth. We spoke to our dentist about it and he suggested we just have her teeth whitened to even it out. The problem is, it didn’t even them out. Her teeth are whiter, but so are the spots. What do we do now?
While I am certain your dentist meant well, he does not really understand how teeth whitening works. As you have discovered, teeth whitening will whiten the tooth structure evenly. It is not designed to even out color.
Let’s start with what those white spots are and then I will give you the next step to take. When you have white spots after braces, those are decalcification spots— pre-cursors to decay. This is fairly common after braces, especially in children and teenagers because those metal wires and brackets are difficult to get around when you are brushing your teeth. That is just one of the reasons I often recommend Invisalign to my patients instead of braces. These do not have any metal wires and brackets. Plus, they are removable, which makes oral hygiene a breeze.
The correct way to deal with these is to have a cosmetic dentist gently remove the white spots with some microabrasion. Then, he or she will recover the area with a composite dental bonding. I am going to suggest you don’t go to your regular dentist for this. It is a rather advanced cosmetic procedure, way more advanced than teeth whitening. Plus, it has to be done freehand. You really need someone who has expertise to do this. One thing to do is check out their smile gallery. Look specifically at their dental bonding cases. If you like the results you see, that will be a safe dentist for you to see. One word of caution. Double check that the images are cases the dentist has done and not just stock photos.
This blog is brought to you by Duluth, GA Dentist Dr. David Marion.