Plastic Surgery

Non-vital tooth bleaching

What is the Non-vital tooth bleaching?

Tooth color is determined by the color of the dentine, enamel and any stains that may be on the tooth. A combination of these colors forms the overall color of the tooth.

Certain causes of discoloration are beyond our control such as: drug-related (tetracycline), the way the tooth forms (dystrophic calcification, fluorosis) and genetic (congenital erythropoietic porphyria, amelogenesus imperfecta and dentinogenesis imperfecta). Other causes related to problems or conditions inside the tooth include death of the nerve, root canal treated teeth, fillings, resorption of teeth and an increase in the thickness of the dentine.

Trauma, previous root canal treatment and death of the nerve can all cause a tooth to become dark yellow, grey, or black. Non-vital teeth are those teeth that do not have a blood supply and have had a root canal treatment completed, or require a root canal treatment.

Non-vital teeth often respond relatively well to vital bleaching techniques, however, it is often very difficult to get an exact shade match to its vital counterparts in the mouth.

Non-vital tooth bleaching techniques

The three most popular techniques for non-vital tooth bleaching are the walking bleach technique, inside/outside bleaching, and in-office bleaching.

The walking bleach technique is a relatively reliable, fairly simple technique for dentists and patients. There is also thermo-catalytic bleach technique used. This procedure is more invasive than the walking bleach technique though the approach is similar. This method is faster because of the strength of the materials used.
Inside/outside bleaching can be used additionally when internal and external bleaching must be combined.

In-office bleaching seems to be a short-term solution, the effects of which can largely be attributed to dehydration of the teeth. The clinical procedure of bleaching teeth with laser systems has recently come into use. Laser energy is a new toll to improve the in-office bleaching of teeth.

What kind of result can you expect?

Recovery period and recommendations

Possible side effects and complications






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