Dental Teeth Whitening

asian girl in dental chair

Teeth Whitening Service in Singapore

Teeth whitening is a dental procedure that helps reduce stains and improve the appearance of teeth. This has become a widely sought-after dental service in Singapore. Teeth whitening at the dentist is not just about improving appearances but also about managing dental health and teeth integrity.

There are several teeth whitening options available:

  • In-Office Whitening: Uses a bleaching gel activated by a special light.
  • Take-Home Whitening Kits: Custom-fitted trays with whitening gel for use at home.
  • Over-the-Counter Products: Whitening strips, gels, and toothpaste available without a prescription.

Teeth whitening is suitable for individuals with stained or discoloured teeth due to smoking, drinking coffee, tea, or wine, or ageing. It is also an option for those who want to enhance their smile’s appearance. Consult a teeth whitening dentist to determine the best method based on your dental health and goals.

Why Consider Professional Teeth Whitening?

There are several benefits to seeing a teeth whitening dentist. A professional method may be more helpful than at-home whitening kits for several reasons:

  • Improve Appearance: Professional teeth whitening can provide custom-fitted solutions, ensuring uniform coverage and more effective results.
  • Professional Treatment: Dentists tailor the procedure to individual oral health needs, considering factors like existing dental work.
  • Safety: Over-the-counter kits may cause gum irritation or tooth sensitivity. A professional approach uses higher-concentration bleaching agents under expert supervision, potentially minimising risks while maximising comfort.
  • Better Oral Health: Regular professional teeth whitening can improve oral hygiene by removing stains and reducing the risk of plaque buildup.
  • Cost-Efficient Option: While the upfront cost may be higher, the long-lasting results and fewer applications needed can make professional whitening more cost-effective in the long run.
  • Long-Lasting Results: Professional methods may yield quicker and more visible results, often in a single session, with effects that last longer than over-the-counter options.

When Is the Best Time to Get Teeth Whitening Done?

The best time to get teeth whitening done is before any major events or occasions where you want to look your best, such as weddings, job interviews, or holidays. For optimal results, it’s advisable to schedule the procedure with a dentist a few weeks in advance to allow any potential sensitivity to subside and to ensure the whitening effect reaches its peak. 

Seasonal considerations include avoiding whitening treatments during times when you may consume more staining foods and drinks, such as around the holidays. Scheduling teeth whitening during lower consumption of such items can help maintain the results longer.

Causes of Teeth Discoloration

causes of teeth discoloration

Teeth discolouration is a common dental concern, and it is essential to understand its various causes. While genetics can play a role in determining the natural colour of your teeth, several external factors can also contribute to changes in their appearance:

Dietary Choices

Dietary choices are a significant factor in tooth discolouration. Regular consumption of teeth-staining substances like coffee, tea, and red wine can lead to external stains. These substances contain pigments that adhere to the enamel, the protective outer layer of teeth, which may cause noticeable discolouration.

Tobacco Use

The use of tobacco products, including smoking or chewing tobacco, introduces tar and nicotine to the teeth. These substances may cause stubborn stains on the enamel, contributing to a darker and often uneven colouration.

Certain Medications and Treatments

Certain medications and medical treatments can also impact teeth colour. For instance, specific antibiotics can affect tooth colour if taken during early childhood. Similarly, cancer treatments like chemotherapy, especially those targeting the head and neck, can alter the hue of dental enamel.

Fluoride Exposure

Excessive exposure to fluoride, either from dental products or certain water supplies, can also lead to a teeth discolouration condition known as fluorosis. It is characterised by white spots or streaks on the teeth, indicating an over-consumption of fluoride.

Enamel Porosity

The natural porosity of tooth enamel is another factor that can impact tooth colour. The enamel has tiny pores that can trap staining agents, leading to a yellowish or brownish discolouration over time.

How Is Teeth Whitening Done?

how is teeth whitening done

There are two methods that dental professionals use to help brighten teeth: vital whitening and non-vital whitening. Each procedure is recommended based on the specific conditions of the teeth, ensuring suitability.

Types of Teeth Whitening

Best For

Whitening Procedure

Vital WhiteningTeeth with an active nerve supply. Lasts 6-12* months (varies depending on lifestyle habits)Process involves applying a whitening gel containing hydrogen peroxide and using a laser to activate the gel. Sessions last 30-60 minutes and may need 2-3 sessions depending on the degree of staining.
Non-Vital WhiteningTeeth without a live nerve supply especially those with root canal treatments. Lasts 6-12* months (varies depending on lifestyle habits)Whitening gel is placed inside the tooth and left for a few days. Not as effective as vital whitening but helps achieve uniform appearance.

Choosing the right teeth whitening option depends on your individual needs and preferences. Vital whitening is typically recommended for teeth with an active nerve supply and is effective for most stains. Non-vital whitening is suitable for teeth that have undergone root canal treatments and helps achieve a more uniform appearance.

Consult with your dental professional to discuss your specific dental conditions, lifestyle habits, and desired outcomes to determine the most suitable whitening procedure for you.

How Long Does Teeth Whitening Last?

It’s important for patients to understand that teeth whitening is not a permanent solution. Generally, teeth whitening results can last six to 12 months, but this duration may differ from person to person*.

The lifespan of the whitening effect depends on how well you take care of your teeth post-treatment. Good oral hygiene practices, including regular brushing and flossing, play a crucial role in maintaining the appearance.

Certain lifestyle habits, like smoking and the frequent consumption of teeth-staining beverages such as coffee and tea, can cause the teeth to stain more quickly after whitening. Avoiding or minimising these habits can help prolong the results.

The dentist may also recommend periodic whitening treatments to maintain the appearance of your teeth. However, the frequency of these touch-ups depends on your specific needs and the initial level of discolouration.

Potential Side Effects of Teeth Whitening and How to Manage Them

Teeth whitening, while helpful in improving your smile, may sometimes lead to temporary side effects. The following are some of the side effects and how to help manage them:

  • Tooth Sensitivity: Increased tooth sensitivity may occur when the whitening agent reacts with the teeth’s dentin layer. To manage this, use toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth and avoid extremely hot or cold foods and beverages for a few days post-treatment.
  • Gum Irritation: Some patients might experience mild gum irritation. This can happen when the whitening gel comes into contact with the gums. If irritation occurs, it usually subsides within a few days. Rinsing with a saltwater solution can help soothe irritated gums.
  • Post-Treatment Care: To reduce the likelihood of side effects and enhance the treatment’s effectiveness, avoiding foods and drinks that can stain the teeth for at least 24 hours after whitening is advisable. This includes coffee, tea, red wine, and tobacco products.
  • Follow-Up Appointments: Regular follow-up appointments are crucial. They allow the dentist to monitor your progress and address any concerns you might have after the teeth whitening session.

It’s important to remember that these side effects are temporary and may subside within a few days.

Cost of Teeth Whitening in Singapore

Understanding the cost of professional teeth whitening is vital for patients considering this dental service. The cost may vary depending on each patient’s needs and the chosen whitening method. It also depends on the type of whitening agent and dental instruments used.

While at-home whitening kits might appear more cost-effective initially, they do not provide the same efficacy as professional teeth whitening. Additionally, the lack of professional supervision with at-home kits may lead to improper use, potentially causing unwanted side effects.

It’s important to note that dental treatments like teeth whitening are usually not covered by standard dental insurance or subsidies in Singapore. However, patients are encouraged to check with their insurance providers as some may offer partial coverage under specific plans.

Frequently Asked Questions About Dental Teeth Whitening

The effects of teeth whitening can typically last from six to 12 months, though this varies depending on individual lifestyle choices and oral hygiene practices. Regular consumption of staining substances like coffee, tea, and tobacco, and inadequate oral care may shorten this duration. Periodic dental whitening treatments are recommended to maintain the whiteness.

Teeth whitening does not cause permanent sensitivity. Some individuals may experience temporary sensitivity during or shortly after the treatment, but this usually subsides within a few days. Using toothpaste for sensitive teeth and avoiding extreme temperature foods can help alleviate this discomfort.

Teeth whitening does not change the colour of crowns, veneers, or fillings. It only works on natural tooth enamel, so any dental implants or restorations will remain their original colour. It is essential to consult a dentist for the desired aesthetic result.

Professional teeth whitening involves the use of potent whitening agents and customised treatments, making it more helpful and safe when conducted under the supervision of dental professionals. In contrast, at-home kits are less potent and may lead to uneven results or potential gum and tooth sensitivity if used improperly.

It is advisable to maintain good oral hygiene post-whitening by regularly brushing and flossing. Avoid foods and beverages that stain teeth, such as coffee, tea, and red wine, especially immediately after the treatment. Regular dental check-ups and follow-up whitening treatments can also help maintain the results.

Book a Teeth Whitening Appointment

Looking to whiten your teeth and improve their appearance? You may seek advice from our dental clinic in Jurong to learn more about the procedure.

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