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Top 4 Treatments for Tooth Discolouration & Removal of Stains

checking teeth after dental check upDiscoloured teeth can have many adverse effects on a person’s self-esteem. It is the first thing someone notices about you, and it can lead to anxiety, depression, and eventually isolation. However, there are many treatment options available, both professional and home-based, that you can go for to get rid of discolored teeth.

Before diving into the treatment of tooth discolouration, you need to know what type of tooth discolouration you have in the first place. There are three different types of tooth discolouration: intrinsic, extrinsic, and age-related.

The Three Causes of Tooth Discolouration


Your teeth have extrinsic discolouration if their outer surface, enamel, is stained. Your teeth can suffer from this type of discolouration if you consume a lot of pigmented food and drinks, such as coffee, tea, wine, cola, etc. Moreover, if you smoke excessively, your teeth can discolour easily. Everyone gets extrinsic discolouration more or less depending on their diet with time.


This type of discolouration occurs in the inner part of your teeth, the dentin. It usually occurs due to illness, medication, or trauma. Consumption of certain antibiotics like tetracycline in childhood when teeth are forming can discolour teeth. Excessive use of fluoride also leads to this problem. Finally, trauma to teeth which causes internal bleeding inside of the tooth, root canal treatment and genetic issues such as dentinogenesis imperfecta can cause discolouration of teeth.


As you age, your dentine thickens and becomes yellow with time. In contrast, the outer part of your teeth, called enamel, becomes thinner with age, and this causes the yellow dentine to become more prominent with age.

How to Treat Tooth Discolouration?

You can try different treatments both at home and in the clinic to get rid of your discoloured teeth. You can also opt for professional bleaching using different trusted whitening brands, dental veneers, or crowns.

1. Professional Whitening

If your teeth suffer from extrinsic or intrinsic stains, it is best to visit a professional to brighten your smile using professional teeth whitening procedures. Dentists can use gels containing bleaching agents in high concentrations, such as carbamide peroxide and hydrogen, to eliminate the staining particles present in your enamel. These active ingredients are used in a controlled environment so that they won’t harm you. Your dentist can do internal whitening for intrinsic staining like root treated teeth. And they can do in-chair whitening for extrinsic or age-related stains.

Your dentist will apply a gingival barrier and gum retractors before treatment so your gums and lips can stay away from the bleaching agent.

Some popular whitening brands trusted by Australian dentists and used widely by them include Philips Zoom, Opalescence and Pola Office.

Philips Zoom: This is a two-step process for professional teeth whitening. Your dentist first applies a 20% hydrogen peroxide gel on your teeth and then shines an LED light on the applied gel. This activates the ingredients present in the gel, allowing fast whitening. The gel also contains a chemical compound called Amorphous Calcium Phosphate or ACP that remineralizes your teeth. Philips Zoom whitening is one of the most trusted brands in the world.

Opalescence: This is a highly viscous gel that, once applied to your teeth, sticks to it firmly. Accordingly, the active ingredients in the gel penetrate your enamel properly, eliminating stains. As Opalescence gel is a chemical formula, you don’t need an LED light to activate it.

Pola Office: You can use this whitening formula with or without an LED light. The dentist applies 35% of this hydrogen peroxide gel on your teeth and either shines a light over it or lets the formula does its work. The formula contains potassium nitrate that desensitizes your teeth during treatment.

2. At-Home Treatment

If you are short on time or can’t afford to do an office whitening, you can visit a dentist for custom made home whitening kit or you can buy a home whitening kit from the supermarket or chemist and brighten your teeth at home. The home kit that your dentist custom make for you will fit perfectly on your teeth hence making the procedure more effective. Also, the ones that are available through chemist or supermarkets are less intense than those your dentist use but effective if you use them consistently. Unlike professional chair-side treatments, it can take up to two weeks for at-home treatments to work. You can maintain your teeth by brushing regularly and consuming less coloured food or drinks.

For the same-day crowns, such steps are not part of the picture. Plus, with the traditional crowns, the patient may also expose their other teeth during the waiting period.

3. Dental Veneers

If your teeth suffer from intrinsic staining, age-related staining or have severe extrinsic staining, you can opt for dental veneers. These are thin custom-made porcelain shells that get cemented on the outer surface of your teeth and enhance the color, shape and up to a certain extent position of teeth. They can improve the appearance of your teeth and smile, and they hide your discolouration as well. Moreover, the porcelain luster gives the veneers a realistic appearance so no one would feel like you are wearing something on your teeth.

Furthermore, your dentist makes your veneers according to your dental alignment. Digital images of your teeth are taken by your dentist and sent to an off-site laboratory for processing. Finally, your permanent veneers may take up to two weeks to create. In that period, you can wear temporary veneers.

4. Dental Crowns

In extreme cases of discolouration, a dental crown may be warranted. This cap is tooth-coloured, and it covers your entire tooth. The dentist can alter the shape and position of your teeth. Crowns are good option for broken and damaged enamel as well.

Treatment Type



– very effective
– convenient
– different methods to choose from
– can be affordable
– no risk of harm to enamel
– temporary sensitivity
– different methods of office whitening is available for all types of staining
– stubborn stains need more work.

– inexpensive
– performed in the comfort of your home
– easy and effective
– slow process
– needs to be done precisely according to the instructions.
– temporary sensitivity
– won’t work on intrinsic staining
– stubborn stains need more work.

Dental Veneers
– Best for intrinsic or age related staining.
– Don’t need touch ups as veneers do not discolour with time.
– Look like natural teeth last for a long time.
– Issues with shape and position of teeth can be corrected too.
– irreversible procedure
– relatively expensive
– anything that causes chipping or fracture of natural teeth can cause veneers to break as well like grinding and clenching

Dental Crowns
– dental crowns best for severe intrinsic staining
– don’t need touch ups
– look like natural teeth
– last a long time
– can correct shape, position of teeth and also perfect for broken or damaged teeth
– irreversible procedure
– relatively expensive


We have discussed the different treatment options you can try if you have discoloured teeth. We hope this article helped you get a better understanding of tooth discolouration and what you can do to remedy the issue.

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