The multiple options for teeth whitening, concerns about cost, teeth and gum sensitivity, an unnatural look and the time required may have deterred you from lightening…until now! Armed with the facts and the help of a teeth whitening dentist your beautiful, natural smile awaits.
Teeth Whitening Defined
Teeth whitening, also known as bleaching, is the removal of stains and discoloration to restore teeth to their original color or better.
Consuming berries, chocolate, coffee, red meat, tea and wine stain enamel and dentin, making teeth look unsightly over time. Other causes include poor dental hygiene, certain medications, smoking and enamel wear due to age that makes the yellow dentin beneath more apparent.
Thankfully, lightening can be achieved in a dental clinic and at home via teeth whitening trays, gels and lights.
Professional Teeth Whitening
Teeth whitening dentists brighten the color of teeth multiple shades quickly and dramatically with professional strength bleaching solutions that are unavailable via over-the-counter whitening strips, toothpastes and mouthwashes.
While lights may be used to activate or cure certain gels, Opalescence® Boost in-office whitening penetrates the enamel deeply to achieve a perfectly white smile without need for a light and can be completed in 40 minutes.
Professional teeth whitening dentists offer teeth whitening trays, also called bleaching trays, for home use as a stand-alone treatment or to maintain the brighter smile achieved with professional procedures. The custom and pre-filled trays are filled with teeth whitening gel.
Gels usually contain hydrogen peroxide as the bleaching agent and come in higher strengths than over-the-counter options. Also, dentists can prescribe the strength of gel based on the degree of staining or discoloration that needs to be bleached.
While custom trays always provide the best results and maximum patient comfort, prefilled trays are very convenient and superior to over-the-counter whiteners.
Patients with sensitive teeth needn’t worry as teeth whitening gel is painted onto the teeth carefully while another solution is painted over gums to prevent chemical burns and gum irritation. Additionally, carbamide peroxide solutions, desensitizing gels and toothpastes are available.
So how do professional methods compare to drugstore products? Drugstore products aren’t as potent as they have a legal limit of 6% hydrogen peroxide, which makes them less effective.
Teeth Whitening Cost
Put aside your worries that it will cost too much to get those pearly whites brighter. In-office treatments may range from $199-$399. Ideally this is followed up with take-home whitening to maintain your new look. Custom tray whitening like Opalescence PF can range from $199-$299 with a kit of four whitening gel refill syringes costing $30 – $40. Prefilled whitening trays, like Opalescence Go, are available for $75-99 per kit.
If your smile is lackluster and you want a smile makeover, professional teeth whitening provides a quick, effective solution in about an hour.