Glendale Cosmetic Dentist Reviews Ways to Whiten Tetracycline Stained Teeth

Written by Dr. McKay on Mar 6, 2012

There are a variety of reasons why teeth can become dark and discolored. The most common causes of enamel discoloration are environmental—staining substances can leave their marks on white enamel over time. However, some patients have dark, discolored teeth as soon as their permanent teeth emerge. These patients suffer from tetracycline stained teeth, and historically there have been few cosmetic options for these people.  However, thanks to modern cosmetic dentistry, our Glendale cosmetic dentists can improve the smiles’ of patients with tetracycline staining.


How does tetracycline staining develop?

Tetracycline is an antibiotic that is used to treat bacterial infections. Until the 1980s tetracycline was frequently used for patients of all ages. However, this antibiotic had an unfortunate side effect; children who used tetracycline developed adult teeth with deep, dark stains embedded within the tooth.  Although tetracycline is not regularly used for children today, there are many adult patients who still live with permanently discolored teeth due to tetracycline use.


Professional teeth bleaching treatments are not usually effective on tetracycline stained teeth, because bleaching treatments are formulated only to bleach surface stains.


Patients with tetracycline staining can often benefit from cosmetic treatments that cover the original dental enamel.


Snap on smile

Snap on Smile is a dental appliance that snaps over your existing smile to transform the appearance of teeth. If you’re looking for a removable and temporary dental transformation, Snap on Smile may work for you.


Dental Veneers

Dental veneers are thin layers of porcelain that are affixed to the surface of the teeth. Veneers look natural and sparkling white. Dental veneers are permanent cosmetic treatment.


Tetracycline stained smiles may not be receptive to conventional bleaching formulations, but there are other cosmetic treatments available to these patients. If you or someone you know has been living with a smile you don’t love, give our Glendale cosmetic dental office a call!