Can You Whiten Dental Restorations?

Dental restorations provide many benefits and help create beautiful, seamless smiles. In many ways, they act like natural teeth. However, restorations and natural teeth are not the same material. The difference in material means that traditional teeth whitening procedures cannot whiten dental restorations. Despite this, there are some strategies to improve the shade of your smile in other ways.

What Are Dental Restorations?

Dental restorations are procedures dentists use to correct the loss of tooth structure caused by decay or injury. They repair cracked, chipped, and broken teeth or teeth affected by cavities. 

A few types of dental restorations dentists use are:

  • Fillings are the most common restoration option, using a material to fill in small cavities in your teeth.
  • Inlays/Onlays also fix cavities. They are more prominent than fillings and smaller than crowns.
  • Crowns, or tooth caps, cover the tooth down to the gum line.
  • Bridges are three to four crowns that cover gaps left by missing teeth. A crown or implant anchors bridges on either side.
  • Implants are anchoring posts made of titanium that replace missing tooth roots.
  • Bonding takes care of gaps, staining, chips, and crooked or unappealing teeth.
  • Porcelain veneers are custom-made shells that cover the front surface of teeth to change their color, shape, size, or length.

Will Teeth Whitening Treatments Damage Dental Restorations?

While teeth whitening will not affect their shade, it is still possible to undergo a procedure without damaging your dental restorations. During these procedures, hydrogen peroxide and other chemicals penetrate the natural tooth enamel to break down stains. For restorations, dentists use durable, nonporous materials that the whitening products are not strong enough to infiltrate. This process can make your previous dental work appear darker, however.

Whitening Dental Restorations

Since traditional tooth whitening will not work on restorations, many patients combine the procedure with other methods to get a bright, seamless smile.

Here are some strategies to get your dream smile despite being unable to whiten dental restorations:

Make Mindful Shade Choices

Your smile will only be as white as your restorations. If possible, whiten your teeth before dental work to ensure an ideal shade match. Shade-matching before treatment is the best way to get optimal results.

Replace Old Restorations After Whitening

You can also replace old dental crowns and other restorations after a whitening treatment. This way, you can match your new restorations to the new shade of your smile. Whitening your teeth will not provide immediate results, so dentists recommend you wait at least two weeks before scheduling an appointment for cosmetic work.

Take Care of Your Dental Restorations

Practicing good dental hygiene will help your dental restorations stay bright. Changes to your lifestyle and eating habits, including avoiding tobacco and limiting your intake of dark foods and beverages, will ensure their strength and beauty are long-lasting.

Choose Smith Dentalworks for Your Dental Restorations

Everyone deserves to feel confident in their smile. At Smith Dentalworks, we offer comprehensive dentistry services to fit your individualized needs. From crowns to dental implants to porcelain veneers, we are your source for restorations in Oro Valley and the surrounding communities. We also offer multiple teeth whitening services.

Contact our cosmetic dental office today to arrange a convenient time for your next visit.