I’ve been longing to get my teeth whitened for some time. I have a pretty smile. The teeth themselves have no nicks or chips. They’re straight, too. But, over the years they’ve gotten darker. I’m guessing that’s because I’m a coffee addict. I know teeth whitening will fix that, but I’m concerned that my dental implant will get damaged as a result. Is there a chance I can get my teeth whitened while protecting my implant?
Sarai S. – Michigan
I have both good and bad news for you. First, the good news. You can get your teeth whitened and the whitening gel will not affect your dental implant. The bad news is also that the whitening gel will not affect your dental implant. What that means is your teeth will get beautifully whitened, but the implant will stay the same color. If your implant is in the back of your mouth, that probably won’t be a big deal. However, if it’s on a front tooth you’ll want it to match the rest of your teeth.
The simple solution is for you to have your teeth whitened and then have the crown for the dental implant re-done to match your new sparkly white smile. If you’re happy with the artistry of the work done on your implant currently, you can just have the same dentist re-do the crown. You’ll want to wait two-weeks after your teeth are whitened for the color to settle down. That will give your dentist the most reliable shade to match it to.
If you aren’t thrilled with how your implant matches your teeth, you should consider having a different cosmetic dentist re-do the crown so you get the best possible result. If you’re not sure how to find an expert cosmetic dentist, you could check with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) to see where the closest accredited dentist is to you. They’re among the top cosmetic dentists in the world and will give you a stunning result.
You mentioned that you’re a heavy coffee drinker. You should be aware up front that while the teeth whitening will permanently remove the stains you currently have on your teeth, new ones can develop. Coffee is notorious for its impact on darkening teeth. You can still drink coffee, it would just mean that you’d need to touch up your whitening every couple of years or so. If you keep your whitening trays, the dentist will usually provide you with touch-up gel.
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