How Often Do You Bleach Your Teeth?

bleachorexisBleaching your teeth can be a good thing. It can give you a fresh new smile, raise your self-esteem, and even brighten your outlook. Research shows that people who flash an esthetically pleasing smile can reap several advantages including better employment opportunities and more romantic relationships. But how often do you bleach your teeth? Some people go overboard and bleach them too much. If you’re one of those people, you can be doing damage to your teeth.  In today’s blog, your Reno dentistsDr. William Wager and Dr. Brian Evans discuss what can happen when you over bleach.

Over Bleaching

Did you know there is a name for the act of over-bleaching their teeth? It’s called bleachorexia and was coined to describe people obsessed with whitening their teeth. No matter how white they are, these people are not happy.  They are addicted to bleaching.

Over-bleaching your teeth can be harmful and may actually do the complete opposite of whitening. Excessive bleaching can make your teeth translucent. When they are translucent they will never look white. The inner dentin, under the enamel, shows through your translucent teeth giving them a yellowish tint. Other harmful results of over bleaching can include hypersensitivity to heat and cold, oral tissue irritation (tongue, gums, cheeks), the wearing away of your tooth enamel which leaves your dentition vulnerable to decay, and nausea.

Realistic Expectations

Intrinsic tooth stains do not respond to bleaching. Intrinsic stains are caused by dark pigmented molecules adhering to the crystal structure of the tooth during its formation. Such stains include:

  • Tetracycline stains
  • Fluoride stains
  • Hyperemia: The dentin is saturated with reddish-brown iron pigments when the tooth is injured.  It is caused by excessive blood flow which is your body’s attempt to heal the injury.

Extrinsic stains, on the other hand, respond well to bleaching because they are on the outside of the enamel. Such stains include:

  • Dark soda stains
  • Red wine stains
  • Tea stains
  • Tobacco stains

About Your Reno Dentists

Dr. William Wager, Dr. Brian Evans, and our highly experienced team at Wager Evans Dental are devoted to our patients and their families, and dedicated to providing first-rate dental care in a comfortable, inviting environment. Located in Reno, we proudly welcome residents from Spanish Springs, Sparks, Incline Village, Dayton, Fernley, and all surrounding communities. To schedule a consultation or your next dental appointment, visit our office, or contact us today by calling (775) 800-4845.