Teeth whitening to remove tobacco stains

teeth bleaching after tobacco

Smoking or chewing tobacco products are habits that are harmful not just to your oral health but also to your overall health. Amongst other health hazards that come with prolonged use of tobacco products, your teeth appear dark yellow to brown. The staining starts within a few days of use and your teeth start to take on a yellow hue which does not go away after brushing. So how can you get rid of these stains? Tooth whitening is a great way.

Nicotine and tar in tobacco are the main culprits behind teeth discoloration. Nicotine by itself is colorless, but when it combines with oxygen, its oxidized form turns yellow. Similar to your skin even your teeth have tiny pores. This nicotine and tar easily get into these pores turning your teeth yellow.

For those who chew tobacco, a dark brown liquid is formed when it mixes with saliva. Habitual tobacco chewers keep it in a certain part of the mouth, where it is in constant contact with certain teeth, staining them heavily. Tobacco stains are extremely tough to remove. The longer your teeth are exposed to nicotine the more challenging it becomes to get rid of them. Even electronic cigarettes that contain nicotine can stain teeth. Depending on how the smoke is inhaled, certain teeth stain more than others.

How does tobacco stain teeth?

Nicotine and tar in tobacco are the main culprits behind teeth discoloration. Nicotine by itself is colorless, but when it combines with oxygen, its oxidized form turns yellow. Similar to your skin even your teeth have tiny pores. This nicotine and tar easily get into these pores turning your teeth yellow.

For those who chew tobacco, a dark brown liquid is formed when it mixes with saliva. Habitual tobacco chewers keep it in a certain part of the mouth, where it is in constant contact with certain teeth, staining them heavily. Tobacco stains are extremely tough to remove. The longer your teeth are exposed to nicotine the more challenging it becomes to get rid of them. Even electronic cigarettes that contain nicotine can stain teeth. Depending on how the smoke is inhaled, certain teeth stain more than others.

How can you brighten your tobacco-stained teeth?

With advances in dental technology, there are effective ways to brighten teeth discolored by tobacco.

Good oral hygiene

Brushing twice a day, even more frequently if possible and following up with flossing to clean in between teeth is very helpful in maintaining overall dental health as well as to remove stains associated with tobacco. Learn the correct way of brushing, starting from your gum line moving upwards. Use fluoridated toothpaste as well as an antibacterial mouthwash.

However, there is only a limit to which your teeth can be brightened by oral hygiene methods but your gums and teeth will thank you for getting rid of plaque and keeping tartar at bay.

Whitening toothpaste

One of the first things you can do to combat your nicotine stains is switching to whitening toothpaste. There are many such over the counter toothpaste in the market. Their effects are not very dramatic, but you can give it a try for a few days.

Mildly noticeable results are seen as they contain very small amounts of whitening agents that remove superficial stains. Tobacco stains are quite tough making such toothpaste ineffective. The drawback of such toothpaste is that they contain abrasive particles that gradually start to remove your enamel.

Whitening strips

Again there are various brands of whitening strips available in the market. But they are difficult to use as you have to hold them against your teeth, which is tedious. For those of you who don’t have perfectly aligned teeth, there will be some areas where the strips will not reach leaving them stained.

Over the counter kits

Such over the counter whitening kits need a few days of steady use for you to see the results. These are not monitored by a dentist and results can vary.

Professional teeth whitening

Professional teeth whitening treatments are much more effective than over the counter options. They are easy, comfortable and monitored by your dentist to make them safe. In some cases, where staining is heavy, it might take more than one session to recover the brightness of your teeth. But overall these are the best and the most effective options for tobacco stain.

There are two types of professional teeth whitening procedures. Both have the same result; they just vary in time and process. Your dentist will guide you and prepare your mouth before the treatment. This avoids any side effects and you are more satisfied with the results.

Laser Teeth Whitening

teeth bleaching after tobacco

This type of whitening is done in the dentist’s office. At first, your teeth are professionally cleaned to remove plaque and tartar. Next, a protective barrier is applied over gums so that they don’t come in contact with the bleach. Your dentist will carefully apply the whitening gel to teeth and activate it with special laser light for 15 minutes. The gel may be reapplied 2-3 more times and the process is repeated to achieve the necessary whitening. The procedure is painless and anesthesia is not required.

This activated gel will remove the stains. The procedure is completed in about an hour. At the end of the treatment, the gel is removed. The laser light combined with whitening agents gives exceptional results, with up to eight shades brighter teeth, in very less time.

At-home bleaching

After taking impressions (measurements) of your teeth, your dentist will provide special take-home trays along with the whitening agents. The bleaching agent is higher in concentration compared to that in the over the counter kit.  Right before going to bed you will load the trays with the bleaching agent and apply them on your teeth. It takes a few days to weeks to get noticeable results.

How can I remove tobacco stains for good?

The most permanent way to avoid tobacco stains is to never smoke or chew tobacco again, the root cause. But not everyone can quit right away. But you can start to decrease the frequency and the quantity gradually. Along with this, you should also start to brush and floss daily. Visit your dentist once in six months for checkup and professional dental cleaning. Make an appointment today with Signature Smiles for teeth whitening and get a brilliant dazzling smile!

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