If you think your smile is lacking some sparkle because of a dead or dark tooth, you’re not alone. In many people, we can see that they have a tooth whose yellowish or gray color contrasts with the others. This can be a dead or dying tooth.
|Dead tooth whitening|
A tooth is made up of three layers, enamel dentin, and pulp. The outer and visible layer is enamel. The second layer is dentin, directly underneath the surface enamel.
The center and the softest layer of a tooth is pulp, carrying important tissues composed of blood and nerves. When these nerves die due to tooth decay or dental trauma, a tooth is considered dead or non-vital tooth.
What Causes a dead tooth?
The leading causes of a dead tooth are tooth decay and dental trauma.
Tooth decay begins in the outermost layer of the tooth, but over time it can go into deeper layers. These cavities can reach the pulp and create a path for the bacteria entering and causing the death of the nerve. The consequences are: cut to the blood supply and sharp pain.
On the other hand, if there is physical trauma to the tooth due to a sports injury or fall, the blood vessels may burst and also cut off the blood supply. If this happened, the nerve and other living tissues within the pulp would die.
Dead tooth diagnosing
The first step in the process of brightening a dead tooth is a thorough examination to discover the cause of the darkening, and one of the first things we will determine is whether the pulp of a tooth is alive or dead. X-rays or other tests reveal this immediately.
It is not always easy to identify a dead tooth by merely looking at it. Only a dental professional can diagnose it. But before proceeding to tooth whitening, it is essential to know if the tooth is alive or dead, a dentist can check it by vitality testing.
Another method to check tooth life is called Electronic Pulp Testing in which a device is placed onto the tooth to know whether the tooth is alive or dead.
What causes tooth darkening?
If a tooth is dead, it will often be darker in color, and you may notice yellow, gray, or black discoloration. Usually, a change in color occurs because the red blood cells are dying. It is an effect very similar to bruises. The discoloration will take place if a dead tooth is not treated, and its discoloration will increase over time.
Dead tooth whitening: If a tooth nerve is alive
If the tooth is still vital, external whitening often produces satisfactory results, even if only one tooth is in need. All the dentists consulted insist that the main thing is to put yourself in the hands of a specialist. He will decide which is the most effective technique, depending on the causes of the color change and the quality of the enamel.
At the dentist, the most common procedure is the use of a bleaching substance that usually contains hydrogen peroxide.
If your tooth is alive, it may just need whitening. In this case, the whitening is gradual, and the process can take several weeks. The whitening substance is usually a gel that is put in a mouth guard over the teeth for a specific period.
Dead tooth laser whitening:
In this case, a product is applied to the teeth, and a laser is used to activate the bleaching. It is a much faster treatment and lasts just an hour. Sometimes it may require 3 or even 4 sessions. It usually depends on how much can a dentist whiten the teeth without harming them.
Dead tooth whitening
If a tooth is dead, home remedies and conventional teeth whitening does not work. All whitening attempts to lighten the enamel (the most superficial layer of the tooth) there will always be a tendency to have a grayish color. For dead tooth whitening, there is a treatment alternative called internal whitening.
Internal whitening is required if your tooth doesn’t respond to the external whitening. Then, it needs root canal treatment if the tooth has not already been treated.
It consists of opening the tooth to expose the pulp chamber. Then, the canal will be cleaned, and all dead tissues are removed. After root canal treatment, a tooth can be bleached from the inside.
If the enamel(the outer layer of a tooth) has become fragile; only internal bleaching will not work, the affected tooth demands a crown. In addition, a dentist may ensure hygienic anatomy that prevents cavities or gum disease.
Dead tooth internal whitening is the best option to change the color of a dead or non-vital tooth. The desired white tone will depend on the days that the treatment lasts. Slight adjustments can be made using conventional bleaching after internment.