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Teeth Whitening: In-Office vs. At-Home

You may be wondering what the difference is between teeth whitening at your dentist's office and at-home treatments. Our Etobicoke dentists explain your options for this popular cosmetic dental procedure to brighten your smile.

Teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental procedure that uses bleaching agents based on peroxide to lighten the colour of your teeth. As the active ingredient degrades, oxygen acts on the tooth enamel, causing the whitening effect.

Today, there are many teeth whitening options available, and this can make it difficult to choose the right one for you. There are several differences between professional teeth whitening at your dental office and the at-home options, and pros and cons of each. 

What Are the Active Ingredients in Whitening Products?

A peroxide solution is used in all whitening products. The strength of whitening agents varies according to their peroxide content. A mild whitening agent may contain as little as 10% peroxide, whereas a much stronger teeth whitener may contain as much as 40% peroxide solution.

Store-bought whitening products, such as whitening strips, are the mildest whiteners with the lowest peroxide concentration. Dentist-administered whitening agents, including take-home whitening trays, are far more potent.

In-Office Teeth Whitening

In-office whitening provides an immediate transformation to your smile, and the results tend to be better because your dentist uses higher-concentration bleaching gels. 

Because it is performed by a trained dental professional, in-office whitening is generally a safe and dependable procedure. Patients who do not pass a basic oral health screening will not be given teeth whitening.

If you choose to whiten your teeth at the dentist's office, the procedure is simple and non-invasive. You can even relax and listen to music while your dentist removes stains to lighten your smile.

At-Home Teeth Whitening 

At-home teeth whitening is a do-it-yourself option that is typically less expensive than in-office teeth whitening at your dentist's office. What's the best part? It is possible to do it from the comfort of your own home.

The majority of patients notice a difference in 10 to 14 days, and the full results will be visible at the end of your treatment period. However, because at-home whitening products contain lower concentrations of bleaching gels, they rarely provide the same level of whitening as an in-office treatment.

If you choose the at-home option, try to find one through your dentist.

Most dentists who provide in-office whitening also provide an at-home version, which entails creating a whitening tray that is custom-fitted to your smile.

Avoid over-the-counter teeth-whitening products if you want to lighten your teeth at home. Because drug-store whitening kits lack the strength of professional-grade whitening, patients frequently do not achieve the desired results. Because they aren't customized to your mouth, these whitening kits can also irritate gums and soft tissue.

To learn more about the in-office and at-home teeth whitening options available at our Etobicoke dental office, contact the team at West Mall Dental.

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