Can You Whiten a Crown - savina dental clinic malta

The last thing anyone wants is stained, spotty, or discoloured teeth ruining their beautiful smile. Most people who have discoloured teeth turn to teeth-whitening procedures and tool kits for help. The whitening process is more challenging than you’d think for those with crowns installed.

Dental crowns are usually installed when decay has weakened the teeth, after root canal treatment and following trauma/fracture of a tooth, among other reasons.

Why crowns can’t be whitened

Dental crowns are made from stainless steel, gold, porcelain, resin-based materials and ceramic. Although they are the best way to protect the injured tooth, they complicate the whitening process.

Apart from stainless steel and gold, other materials are created to look more like natural teeth, but teeth-whitening chemicals do not affect these ceramic and composite materials. They can only affect enamel and dentine.

What causes your natural teeth to discolour

Over time, teeth are stained by intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Extrinsic causes include drinking red wine, coffee, berries, or smoking, while intrinsic causes include ageing, genetics, and prescription drugs. The latter are often out of your control.

Extrinsic stains can be whitened or removed through various processes, but intrinsic stains are often permanent. With such changes and the fact that crowns cannot be whitened, one develops a two-toned smile.

You can read more about our full teeth whitening treatment options at Savina Dental Clinics.

What options are available to improve your smile if a crown cannot be whitened?

If you cannot whiten your dental crowns and still want to improve your smile, one option is to replace the crowns. Your dentist can help you choose crowns with the right colour and shape to improve your smile. They may recommend having in-office teeth whitening first before replacing the crown so that the new crown shade will match your newly whitened teeth colour.

A simple cleaning can sometimes help

Although most crowns are composed of porcelain, some are not and can stain more easily. Porcelain crowns are not immune and may have a stubborn surface stain that requires more attention than regular brushing. Acidic foods such as tomatoes, wine, and cigarette smoke can all induce stains.

While routine brushing and flossing may remove these stains, they cannot penetrate the strong surface of a crown and will most likely be removed by a professional dental cleaning. A dentist’s office has the necessary instruments to carefully clean natural teeth and crowns, restoring their brilliant lustre.

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Savina Clinic – Dental & Implantology Centres are friendly, state-of-the-art practices in Malta and Gozo dedicated to comprehensive quality dental care. Savina Dental is an innovative dental practice in Malta and prides itself on high-quality customer service, low waiting room times, attention to detail and the advanced dental technology at its disposal.

Joseph Xuereb
Principal Dental Surgeon & Owner of Savina Dental Clinics, Dr Joseph Xuereb BChD (Hons), MFGDP(UK), MGDS RCS(Eng), FFGDP RCS(UK), FICD is a general dental practitioner with a special interest in Implant and Restorative Dentistry. Dr Joseph & the teams' full biographical information can be found here.