Professional vs. Drugstore Teeth Whitening: What’s the Difference?
When it comes to dental discoloration, you are not alone. Millions of people around the world are affected by teeth discoloration to varying degrees. Even people who brush, floss, and make regular visits to the dentist find that environmental factors, food, and even time can take a toll on your once natural radiance. Fortunately scheduling a professional teeth whitening at Downtown Dental is an incredibly effective way to achieve a naturally whiter smile.
In today’s world, you have more access to more teeth whitening options than you ever have before. While there are a myriad of over-the-counter products to choose from, a professionally supervised treatment is safer, more dependable, and longer lasting.
What’s the difference between professional whitening and drugstore whitening?
It’s not uncommon for our patients to ask, “Do at-home teeth whitening kits work as well as the professional ones from a dental office?” It’s only natural that you want to save money where you can when it comes to your teeth whitening procedure. While certain drug-store kits will lighten your teeth, they won’t work as quickly or as comfortably as professional systems and your results won’t be as long lasting. Although you might feel like you are saving on costs initially, you will probably end up paying a lot for results that just don’t match up with what experience from a professional.
Over-the-counter (OTC) provided whitening systems most commonly use Hydrogen Peroxide as their main active ingredient. While this is the same active ingredient we will use here in our offices at Downtown Dental, OTC options are at a much lower concentration. Thankfully so, if the concentration were any higher you could risk doing major damage to your teeth and gums.
Besides concentration, the main difference between OTC and professional teeth whitening systems is the way that the chemically active gel is applied to your teeth. A professional at-home system utilizes a custom made tray that holds the active hydrogen peroxide gel in contact with your teeth simultaneously preventing contact with your gum tissue. Some dentists will require one or more of their whitening procedures to be conducted in the office. In this case, your dentist will provide a carefully moderated application as to not invoke sensitivity on the teeth or gums.
Professional Teeth Whitening: Safer, Longer-Lasting Results
When you visit our professional dentists at Downtown Dental for your teeth whitening needs, you get more reliable, brighter, and longer-lasting results than you would at home. Here’s why:
1. Access to better equipment. Visiting a dentist for your teeth whitening procedure means that you will have access to the latest and best teeth whitening equipment. Using high-grade dental tools drastically raises the chance of receiving better whitening results in an environment that is safe and controlled.
2. Higher-grade bleaching products yield faster results. Professional teeth whitening solutions hold a peroxide concentration of up to 40%! At home agents will never exceed 20%. Because of this, professional bleaching products work to whiten your teeth faster, so you see more satisfying, quicker results than with your OTC solution.
3. More effective and longer-lasting whiteness. Most home-based whitening systems utilize whitening toothpastes and gels. These solutions have a limitation on how much they can really do, typically only whitening your teeth a few shades, which are short-lived. Professional whitening procedures, on the other hand, are more comprehensive. With better tools and stronger whitening agents, our dentists are able to reach into the deeper layers of your teeth, resulting in a brighter smile and more enduring results.
4. Reliability and quality control. While teeth whitening is by no means permanent, professional results can last up to two years depending on the method used. Comparatively, at home kits are only going to render results for up to two weeks. Quality control and safe practices during you whitening journey ensures that you will endure long-lasting results for the entire predicted period. Your dentist will be able to monitor your results to ensure that they are as predicted. If not, additional sessions or other interventions will be recommended.
5. Safety guaranteed. Although teeth whitening is generally safe, there are always some risks associated with bleaching your teeth at home. This includes increased sensitivity or damage to your gums. When bleaching agents aren’t used properly, they can cause irreversible damage to your gums and teeth. When you visit a dentist for your teeth whitening needs, these risks are minimized. Trained dentists will have a better understanding of the procedures at hand along with extensive knowledge on the products and tools they are using.
Am I a good candidate for Teeth Whitening?
Any person whose teeth have become stained due to drinking and eating are great candidates for professional teeth whitening procedures. If your stains are located on the inner layers of your teeth from fluoride or mediation use, our dentists at Downtown Spokane Dental can discuss ways to improve the color of your teeth outside traditional bleaching techniques. Before you begin your teeth whitening process, your teeth will undergo a thorough checkup and cleaning to identify potential issues and remove surface stains that could get in the way of your procedure. Remember even after your teeth whitening procedure, you will want to keep up good hygienic habits to preserve your results.
Is Teeth Whitening worth the cost?
As far as cosmetic dental procedures go, teeth whitening is the most affordable way you can improve your smile. In fact, many people opt to whiten their teeth rather than other expensive improvements. Our convenient in-office and at-home whitening treatments render immediate results that continue to develop with longer use. Instead of spending money on low-strength toothpastes, products, or kits, visit a professional for instant, long lasting results at a reasonable price.
If you or someone you know has been considering cosmetic improvements for his or her teeth, the first step is visiting a professional teeth whitening dentists. Sometimes, teeth whitening is all a person needs to fall back in love with their smile. Professional teeth whitening renders amazing results in all types of individuals for a brighter, whiter smile.