Gum whitening is a cosmetic and aesthetic dentistry procedure used to remove black spots or patches on the gums or whiten completely darkened gums. The medical terms for whitening of gums are gum depigmentation or gum deepithelialization.
Causes of pigmented gums?
The normal colour of gums is pink or shades of it. However, in some cases, they may show black spots, patches or complete darkening creating an aesthetic or cosmetic problem.
The most common cause of pigmentation of the gums and oral mucosa is melanin. Melanin is a brown pigment that is produced by cells known as melanocytes, which are found on the skin and other areas such as the gums.
Melanin hyperpigmentation is a term used to describe excessive darkening in the gums which some people find to be unaesthetic. The range of darkening can vary from dark brown spots to large patches and sometimes 100 per cent dark brown or black gums. Black gums refer to where the whole gum is completely dark brown in appearance.
Other than melanin, gum hyperpigmentation may also be caused by long-term use of certain medications and also smoking.
Current techniques of whitening gums?
There are several techniques that can be used to remove gingival hyperpigmentation and have bleached even coloured gums. They are
1.Laser gum bleaching: This is the best option as it is non-invasive, pain-free, instant and with minimum or no injection required to numb the gums. In this technique, dental lasers are used to produce specific light wavelengths, which are absorbed by the pigments to lighten or remove them. Moreover, laser energy also causes destruction of the melanin leaving the area even, uniform in colour and texture.
2.Surgery: Surgery is done to remove the affected gum and some underlying tissues. However, this is invasive and takes longer to heal due to the surgical wounds left behind.
3.Bleaching: Bleaching solutions may be used to alter the colour. However, the pigmentation may recur, as the melanocytes are still active. Acidic burns, gum irritation and sensitivity are some of the complications.
Do not miss out on the latest news. Join the Eve Digital Telegram channel HERE.