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Is micro-abrasion right for making your smile white?

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There are a number of treatments that can help you to achieve whitened teeth and one of the common but lesser known ones is micro-abrasion treatment. But is this treatment safe and does it work?

What is micro-abrasion treatment?

Micro-abrasion treatment is the careful removal of a thin layer of your enamel. Basically, the discoloured part of your enamel is removed. This can be done during a normal dental clean. Follow up treatments may require the bleaching of the teeth to keep them white.

Discoloured enamel can be the result of dietary habits, such as drinking a lot of coffee or fizzy drinks without a straw, or other habits including smoking. But everyone is born with slightly discoloured enamel. This can include white spots, known as dental fluorosis, or areas of yellow or brown. If you are born with large areas of white, these can turn brown over time as they are exposed to food and drink.

While it sounds invasive, micro-abrasion is actually fairly simple to perform and doesn't require an anaesthetic. The treatment is carried out using a paste containing acid and an abrasive which rubs away the discoloured enamel.

Is it safe?

Micro-abrasion is perfectly safe for your teeth. Contrary to what you might think, the treatment doesn't weaken the teeth as only a very thin layer enamel is removed. The treatment is also painless as it doesn't touch any of the nerves in or around the teeth.

However, is the discolouration of your enamel is deep and won't come away with the very top layer, then your dentist may need to remove more of the enamel. A filling will then have to be stuck to your tooth to protect it. This usually doesn't require any anaesthetic but it is more involved than the average micro-abrasion treatment. The treatment will take longer to perform and it can weaken your teeth, so do give this consideration before going ahead.

Does micro-abrasion work to whiten your teeth?

Yes, micro-abrasion can be very successful in leaving you with a gleaming white smile. In fact, the treatment will leave your teeth feeling smoother and they will be easier to clean. However, this treatment cannot be frequently repeated. Enamel doesn't grow back, so if you undertake micro-abrasion you will need to maintain an excellent oral hygiene routine to keep your teeth white.

If your discoloured smile is putting a dampener on your confidence, speak to a dentist like Rutherford Dental about whitening them.