I was wondering if Zoom whitening will work to even out uneven color. My daughter just got her braces off, which was a bigger deal than Christmas around here. Unfortunately, the excitement was short lived because she has really white spots all over her teeth, now that her braces are gone. My brother-in-law is a family dentist and he suggested we try Zoom whitening. Nothing against family, but I want to ask a professional before finding someone here. We just moved here and don’t have a regular dentist in place. I just want to make sure I know what I’m looking for and don’t put my daughter through any extra stress. Was something done wrong during her orthodontic treatment?
-Jen in New Mexico
Well, it’s always good to start with family. In this case, your brother-in-law is not correct. It sounds like his focus is likely general dentistry and in regard to your daughter’s issue, a cosmetic dentist is the way to go. Although Zoom whitening is a highly effective teeth whitening treatment, it will fail for uneven color issues. Many times Zoom or other teeth whitening used on white spots will actually make the white spots stand out more than they already do.
It is difficult to give you specific recommendations without having seen your daughter’s case in person. But under most circumstances, when there are white spots left after the braces are removed, it’s decalcification. This isn’t uncommon and usually occurs if there are some oral hygiene issues while the braces are in place. The best thing to do at this time is to have a consultation with an excellent cosmetic dentist in your area. You will be much better served with a cosmetic dentist over a general or family dentist. There is a product that may work well to re-mineralize those white spots, called Tooth Mousse. It is specially formulated to target white spots caused by decalcification, just like your daughter has. Or microabrasion is a possibility. But microabrasion does have some drawbacks because it tends to make the teeth look more creamy than white.
The best option, assuming you go to an expert cosmetic dentist, is direct dental bonding. The enamel that is damaged would be removed and a composite bonding material would be placed directly over those white spots. This method will help protect the tooth from any further decay and will look natural and beautiful.
Your daughter deserves to be smiling after putting in her time with braces. A cosmetic dentist is definitely the way to go. Thank you for your question.