Ethnic Pigmentation

Ethnic Pigmentation and Gum Bleaching – What You Need to Know

Health & Fitness

Ethnic pigmentation in the gums isn’t just an aesthetic problem, it can be painful too! But how do you know if you have ethnic pigmentation and what can you do about it? To answer these questions and more, read on…

Gingival Hyperpigmentation:

Gum bleaching is a dental procedure that uses lasers to remove or reduce gum pigmentation. The procedure has been used in the past, but was not very successful, as it caused the substantial gingival recession. Today dentists have a better understanding of ethnic pigmentation, so they know which lasers work best on different skin colors. For example, laser types like KTP (potassium titanyl phosphate) and Nd: YAG (neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet) can be used for darker-skinned patients with greater safety than older laser types.

Why Gum Bleaching Isn’t Commonly Recommended?

Gum bleaching is how dentists would try to remove gum pigmentation in the past — the keyword there being tried. Using painful lasers, dentists would literally burn away an entire layer of the gum tissue in the hopes of getting rid of the melanocytes (which produce pigment) that cause black gums, but it was rarely successful. Black gums can be caused by genetics or by teeth grinding, so they’re not necessarily a problem that’s easy to fix. If you are considering gum bleaching, we recommend you consult with a dentist first — preferably one who specializes in cosmetic dentistry. They’ll be able to give you a better idea if this is something worth trying for your specific case.

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Ethnic Pigmentation

Why Some People Are Choosing To Bleach Their Gums Anyway?

Dentists have been using lasers for gum bleaching for a few years now, but there are still those who choose to bleach their gums the old-fashioned way — with harsh chemicals. If you’re considering this, it’s important to know what you’re in for. The first step is getting your teeth brushed thoroughly, then putting on a thick layer of Listerine (or some other strong mouthwash) on your gums and letting it sit for five minutes before spitting out. Next comes hydrogen peroxide. This will sting a little bit, so if you want, wrap your mouth with an ice pack beforehand.

How Would I Get My Gums Bleached?

The best thing you can do is try to keep your teeth clean by brushing, flossing, drinking lots of water, and avoiding foods that are known for staining. As much as I don’t like giving up coffee, I’ve noticed my teeth have stayed whiter because of it. Plus, if you’re a smoker or chew tobacco, then there’s not much that you can do about the pigmentation on your gums. That being said, gum bleaching is still an option for those who want whiter teeth but are worried about the risks of the procedure.

Some Final Thoughts:

Ultimately, the best way to get rid of pigment on your gums is the same way you do it anywhere else: proper skin care. Be sure to wear sunscreen and brush your teeth twice a day. If you’re really looking for long-term results, try using an over-the-counter tooth whitening kit as well. Remember that these kits contain hydrogen peroxide so be careful not to swallow any foam. While gum bleaching may sound promising, we can’t recommend doing this yourself at home without consulting with a professional first. Even if you find one that’s safe, it’ll still be quite painful since they use lasers (or something similar) to burn away gum tissue in order to expose more melanocytes. Of course, all things considered, there’s no need to risk pain or scarring if you don’t have dark pigmentation on your gums in the first place!

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