I have small, bright white spots on the bottom of my front teeth. It looks odd, and I would like to remove them. Is it possible to remove them? Also, should I be concerned about the health of my teeth?
Hey Josh, Great question.
White spots on teeth have a variety of causes, including:
- Fluorosis. This can happen if large amounts of fluoride are taken in as a child whilst the teeth are in the developmental stages. Typically teeth will have a chalk white appearance, often with yellow or even brown hue. Sometimes the fluorosis can be banded across the tooth depending upon when the fluoride was ingested.
- Demineralisation. This can happen if the outer layer of the tooth (enamel) isn’t able to re-mineralised itself due to accumulation of plaque or other barrier, such as an orthodontic bracket. These tend to appear slightly lighter and are not quite so white and intense as fluorosis.
- Hypoplasia. These again are formed during the developmental stages of the teeth. Common causes include certain illnesses, fevers and medicines ingested. Some studies have even shown the link to mothers smoking during pregnancy and causing hypoplasia on children’s teeth.
If the white spot is only on the surface of the tooth then micro-abrasion may be used. This involves a gentle abrasion of the tooth with a special abrading agent which is blasted against the tooth using a device similar to an air sprayer.
If the white spot is deeper than surface abrasion then your dentist may choose another option such as teeth whitening
However, even with teeth whitening your dentist may feel they are not able to get rid of the white spot completely. In this instance some form of restorative option may be required. Your dentist might remove the white spot and then fill in the space where it was with a natural tooth coloured composite material. This technique is known as dentine bonding.
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Disclaimer: The information provided through this answer is generic and is not personal dental advice, it does not take into account the physical state, medical status and/or health requirements of any particular individual, which are relevant to the proper diagnosis and treatment of any problem, condition or disorder. Consequently, you should never use or act upon this information without first properly consulting, and seeking proper information and advice from a qualified medical practitioner.
All articles are either written by, or content checked by an ex-General Dental Council (retired) registrant. Information in these articles should not be taken as dental advice and are for general information only, you should always seek advice of your local dentist, if you do not have a local dentist you might like to search our register.