Treatment Information

Teeth can stain and discolor for a number of reasons: drinking tea, coffee and red wine, smoking, or even eating certain types of coloured foods. In fact, it is almost impossible to have a lifestyle that will not stain your teeth!Fortunately it is possible for us to remove these stains, and brighten your teeth in a matter of weeks by using a home whitening kit.

The process is relatively simple, involving just a few steps. Firstly, we will check all your teeth and gums to ensure that you are dentally fit and a good candidate for whitening. Then impressions are taken, and a custom-made tray that fits exactly to your mouth will be fabricated. Once we have made sure that the trays fit properly, we will show you how to use the whitening gel, which is placed in the tray and worn through the night as you sleep. The trays are extremely thin and comfortable to wear, people rarely have any problems sleeping with them.


1.Is everybody suitable?

Most people are suitable candidates for whitening. If you have existing crowns/veneers/fillings on your front teeth, then these will not whiten, and results may be unpredictable.

2.How long do the teeth whitening effects last?

Teeth whitening results are long-term, but not permanent. People who smoke, or expose their teeth to foods and drinks that cause staining will see the whiteness fade more quickly than those who don't. Once your whitening trays are made, they can be reused, and it is a simple and inexpensive process to 'top-up' from time to time. We recommend topping-up one night every second month to maintain optimum whiteness.

3. Do teeth whiteners damage tooth enamel?

Studies of teeth whitening products using 10% carbamide peroxide or 6% hydrogen peroxide showed little to no effect on the hardness or mineral content of a tooth's enamel surface.

4. Are there any side effects?

Between 10-20% of people who whiten their teeth experience sensitivity, either during the night when whitening, or the following day. This sensitivity is transient, and normally goes away within 24 hours. Using sensitive toothpastes, or special desensitizing gels available from Portobello Dental Clinic will normally alleviate the sensitivity

5. Do teeth whiteners damage a tooth's nerve?

There's no evidence to date that the teeth whitening process has a harmful effect on the health of a tooth's nerve. One study reported that at both a 4.5 and 7-year follow up, no individual who used a teeth whitening system needed a root canal procedure on any teeth that had been whitened

Veneers are facings that are bonded to the outer surfaces of your teeth to improve their appearance. They are rather like false nails. They can be made of composite filling material or porcelain.

In what type of cases would veneers be suitable?

Dental veneers are an ideal form of treatment if you have any of the following:

• Chipped teeth.

• Stained and discoloured teeth.

• Spacing between the teeth (which you are unhappy with).

• Mildly crooked teeth.

• Teeth that aren't a great shape (e.g. too short or too narrow).

A crown is an artificial tooth that fits over the remaining part of a prepared tooth, making it strong and giving it the shape of a natural tooth.

A crown is sometimes known as a 'cap'. Crowns are an ideal restoration for teeth that have been broken, or have been weakened by decay or a very large filling. They can be made of porcelain or gold or a combination of these materials.

A dental crown could be used for a number of other reasons, for instance:

•You may have discoloured fillings and would like to improve the appearance of the tooth

•For cosmetic reasons where a front tooth has become very discoloured or damaged

•You may have had a root filling which will need a crown to protect and strengthen it

•It may help hold a bridge or denture firmly in place.

Root Canal Treatment (also called Endodontics) is unavoidable when the nerve or blood supply of the tooth is infected through decay or injury.The infection can spread through the root canal system of the tooth. This may eventually lead to an abscess.

Root Canal Treatment requires a skilled dentist and it is also a time-consuming procedure, perhaps needing more than one appointment.

1.The infected pulp is removed at the first appointment.

2. Any possible abscesses are to be drained at this time.

3. The root canal is then cleaned and shaped for the filling.

4. A temporary filling is inserted.

5. The tooth is left to settle.

6. The tooth is checked at a later visit.

7. When all infection has cleared the tooth is permanently filled.

Very often following root canal treatment the tooth may require a crown.

Why have Root Canal Treatment?

If Root Canal Treatment is not done properly, the infection will spread and the tooth will need to be removed. Some patients might prefer an extraction. However, we suggest to keep many natural teeth as possible.

Useful Links

Adult and children's oral health information Irish Dental Association
American Dental Association