Teeth Whitening: In-Office vs. Take-Home vs. Store-Bought

BY Dr. McDowell  |  April 17th, 2019
Dr. McDowell
Dr. McDowell has always been focused on using the latest technology to improve the patient experience. From radiation-free imaging to laser dentistry, he has always been ahead of the curve and is dedicated to improving the practice of dentistry one ..

Americans have an obsession with dental hygiene. While some obsessions are unhealthy, here at Wayzata Dental, we consider this infatuation to actually be quite healthy. There is nothing wrong with wanting to make sure that your teeth are healthy and that your smile is looking as good as it can.

After all, feeling good about how you look helps exude confidence — and confidence is key.

That said, many Americans also have a problem with the color of their teeth. According to Reader’s Digest, there are many factors that can contribute to discolored teeth, including drinking wine and other dark liquids, eating curry, taking certain antibiotics or medications, and even eating foods containing balsamic vinegar.

If you’re someone who looks in the mirror and wishes their teeth were more white, you’re certainly not alone. And, lucky for you, there are a number of treatments available to aid you in your battle against tooth discoloration. Today we’re going to talk about the three main types of teeth whitening (in-office, take-home, and store-bought) and which is the best solution for you.

First up, in-office.

In-Office Teeth Whitening

When it comes to in-office teeth whitening, you know you’re going to get the best bang for your buck. This technique of teeth whitening is credited as being the most effective and long-lasting. Why? Because when in a professional setting, a dentist uses teeth whitening treatments that contain anywhere from 25 percent to 40 percent hydrogen peroxide.

Hydrogen peroxide is the key ingredient to any teeth whitening solution and does the bulk of the work in terms of making and keeping your teeth white. For example, at home teeth-whitening products only contain about 10% hydrogen peroxide.

In addition to being more effective, in-office teeth whitening will only require one trip to the dentist and will take roughly 20-30 minutes altogether. So, while this option is more expensive than others, you can expect to see better results faster.

Take-Home Teeth Whitening

The next tier-down from in-office treatment is professional take-home whitening kits that a dentist will supply to you.

This technique begins with the dentist taking impressions of your teeth and sending them to a lab where they will make whitening trays that are specially designed for your teeth. No more than two weeks later, you’ll receive your trays, which you will then have to wear for an hour or so a day for two more weeks filled with a whitening gel.

While this process overall costs a little less than the in-office treatment, it does take longer and requires more work on your part but you will see some great results.

Store-Bought Teeth Whitening

There is a large number of options when it comes teeth whitening products that you can find in stores, so we’ll just cover them in general by breaking them down into four categories: Over-the-counter trays, gels, toothpaste, and strips.

Whitening Kits

With store-bought whitening kits, you’ll be able to bypass the process of waiting for your tray for a couple of weeks and simply purchase a ready to use one. However, it won’t fit your mouth as well and the bleaching agents will generally be weaker — meaning it most likely won’t be as effective as getting one through a dentist. However, the price is much lower for this alternative.

Whitening Strips

Some people love them, some people hate them. Whitening strips are a cheap option and will generally do a solid job at getting your teeth whiter, but the results tend to be less noticeable and last shorter than the in-office option. Every four months or so, you’re going to have to reapply the strips. Usually, it’s daily for about an hour, but product instructions may vary from brand to brand.

Whitening Gels

Whitening gels that you can by at stores are extremely cheap, but once again the results tend to be less dramatic and you’ll have to reapply the gel often when you notice the discoloration coming back.

Whitening Toothpaste

Toothpaste is a viable option for those who may just notice a slight discoloration in their teeth, or if you’re not too bothered by the stains in general. This is because it can take up to three months to see substantial results using teeth whitening toothpaste.

You can also throw in some whitening rinse to help as well. However, most dentists agree that whitening toothpaste and rinse just aren’t as effective as the other techniques.

Wayzata Dental – Your Go-To Resource For Your Teeth Whitening Needs

At Wayzata Dental, we love helping our clients achieve the smile they want through our effective teeth whitening solutions. This includes our in-office Boost Whitening technique, take-home teeth whitening, and Nite White teeth bleaching. Learn more about these options here and set up an appointment today to get started. We’ll help talk you through which method is right for you.

Call 952-473-4900 to set up an appointment or fill out our brief contact form. We’re looking forward to hearing from you!

Dr. McDowell
Dr. McDowell has always been focused on using the latest technology to improve the patient experience. From radiation-free imaging to laser dentistry, he has always been ahead of the curve and is dedicated to improving the practice of dentistry one ..

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