Teeth Whitening With Dental Implants and Crowns: What You Need to Consider
Modern dentistry can be so remarkable that it's almost possible to forget that you've had work done. Whether you've had a dental implant or crown, in many instances only you and your dentist will know that something has been added to your smile. A key time when you might be reminded of this fact is when you want to whiten your teeth. Most teeth whitening options, whether it's a professional service or an over-the-counter product, get to work on your dental enamel. Of course, a prosthetic tooth or crown doesn't have any dental enamel, and while the active ingredient in the teeth whitening solution (generally hydrogen peroxide) could theoretically make a tiny difference in the colour of a prosthetic tooth, any results are going to be negligible. So how can you whiten your teeth when one (or more) of them have been installed by a dentist?
The first thing to know is that you should avoid using over-the-counter teeth whitening systems when you have a prosthetic tooth. While these systems might have some success when someone's teeth are entirely their own, in your case, the results can be problematic. Such a system is simply too imprecise when you have a prosthetic tooth, and the resulting whitening can produce a two-tone effect, wherein your natural teeth are whitened but your prosthetic tooth remains the same colour as when it was installed.
Your only viable option is to visit your dentist for professional whitening. They have the ability to work with the necessary precision, whitening on a tooth-by-tooth basis to achieve a uniformity of colour. Though this method is thorough, with quick and noticeable results, the mere presence of a prosthetic tooth can create some limitations.
The colour of the prosthetic tooth would have been a topic of discussion between you and your dentist when it was being fabricated. It's important to be aware that the shade of this tooth represents the maximum whiteness for your overall smile. To overly whiten your natural teeth can, once again, create this two tone effect. So while your dentist can whiten your natural teeth quickly and easily, they will only do so until they have achieved a uniformity of colour with the prosthetic tooth. Should you wish to go even whiter, the prosthetic tooth will need to be replaced, and the feasibility of this comes down to finances.
So while a prosthetic tooth can look so natural that you might forget it's there, it's important to remember that it will not whiten like a natural tooth.