Can Children and Teens Get Teeth Whitening Done?

Can Children and Teens Get Teeth Whitening Done?

Sometimes, parents are concern about the newly erupting teeth of their kids having dark or yellowing colour. They would even ponder if teeth whitening is the answer.

Knowledge about tooth-whitening products and procedures have significantly grown in the past years. Both patients and parents inquiring about tooth-whitening have also increased particularly for parents who have concerns about the self-image of their kids and older teens who want to have amazing smiles.

However, are tooth-whitening procedures and products safe for kids and teens? Let our Surrey Dentists explain.

There may not actually be a problem

Adult teeth have more dentin in them compared to erupting baby teeth. Dentin is the layer found in teeth just underneath the enamel. Dentin has a yellow tinge and can make adult teeth appear more significantly yellowish compared to baby teeth.

In summary, it’s natural to see adult teeth looking more yellow as compared to baby teeth. After all the baby teeth have fallen, the darker-coloured teeth of adults will become less noticeable.

Primary teeth generally do not need treatment

Dental health professionals will see stains or discolourations on primary or baby teeth as something that would not require treatment. Since these teeth are only temporary and will be likely replaced with a white permanent set of teeth soon. It would also be good to talk to your dental health professionals to know more and understand what causes tooth discolouration among kids and teens to eliminate any problems that may cover outside cosmetic concerns.

The research is limited

First, it would be best to know that research regarding tooth-whitening for kids and teens is very limited. Most studies about tooth-whitening only revolve around adult patients, so knowing short or long-term effects of tooth whitening for kids and teens is lacking. In America, the most recent update regarding such matter as published by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry is from 2009.

Whitening toothpaste can be too abrasive for children

Whitening toothpaste normally works due to the added mild abrasive that aids in removing surface stains. In some cases, using such product can lead to tooth sensitivity for tooth enamel may be “scraped” away, exposing the teeth. Whitening toothpaste can be sometimes too hard for kids and teens and must be avoided.  For teens, make sure to use ADA approved toothpaste and immediately stop using after signs of tooth sensitivity.

Thanks to Clover Hills Dental for their expert advice.

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