My daughter has been counting the days until her braces came off. For her 16th birthday, she wanted nothing more than to have them removed. We did it! But the excitement was short-lived when she had these ugly white spots left on her teeth. The orthodontist didn’t say much, so when we took her into our regular dentist he recommended getting Zoom whitening done. So we did. Big mistake! The white spots look worse. He told us the color would even out but nothing has happened since the whitening was done. Do we really have to wait? Or should we try another form of tooth whitening?
– Pam in Maryland
When white spots appear after braces are removed, it is not a teeth whitening issue. This is actually decalcification that occurs since it is very difficult to clean around the braces. If extra care is given to the hygiene, then the minerals in the tooth are stripped off. Cosmetically, this appears as white spots on the tooth. It’s not decay, which many individuals actually assume. It is from the lack of minerals that leaves the teeth more succeptible.
Unfortunately, the orthodontist should have addressed this issue. Also, it doesn’t sound like your general dentist does much cosmetic dentistry. He should have known this wouldn’t fix the problem.
Zoom whitening will do the opposite, as you found out the hard way. The spots stand out more! There are some oral health products on the market designed to re-mineralize the teeth. But there really are no guarantees with going that route. But if you are interested in giving them a try, look up Tooth Mousse or MI Paste online. They claim that the high mineral content in the product will help strengthen and re-absorb the minerals.
Another treatment that may work for your daughter is called microabrasion. If you explore this option, be sure the dentist has had success with this treatment. Ask to see cases similar to yours and ask if he has ever had any cases that turned out creamy versus white after treatment. Since these spots will eventually be decayed areas, it may be beneficial to have them removed. That is the thought process behind this option. Then dental bonding is added to protect and strengthen the teeth. This will also eliminate the appearance-related issues your daughter is troubled with. Bonding will require periodic touch-ups.
Thanks for your question. Good luck!
This post is sponsored by Cleveland dentist Hylan Dental Care.