Are you considering whitening your teeth? You probably know you have lots of options to choose from. Today, our dentists at Toothworks College Park Dental explain why they would likely recommend professional teeth whitening instead of over-the-counter white strips.
Professional teeth whitening may be more expensive compared to white strips. That said, it might be worth the extra expense if your priorities are convenience and effectiveness.
Over-the-counter teeth whitening strips are available at your pharmacy and are designed to remove surface stains from your teeth. You won't have to see your dentist to get hold of them.
While there are some advantages to these types of products, they also have some disadvantages.
For starters, they can be challenging to use and may slip out of position easily. Further, some of the more advanced white strips can start to get pricey. This can be extremely inconvenient to deal with. In addition, white strips may not whiten all of your teeth effectively. They are usually only designed to fit over the six (or so) front teeth at the top and bottom of your mouth.
If you are looking to whiten your smile significantly, white strips may not provide the results you're hoping for (according to some, mind you). This is due to the fact they only some of the surface stains on your teeth will be removed by using them. The strips do not lighten the actual colour of your teeth in any way.
Professional whitening is typically available in two varieties, from which you can select the one that best suits your needs and/or preferences.
In-office whitening is performed in the comfort of your dentist's office over the course of one or two individual sessions. Take-home teeth whitening trays, as prescribed by your dentist, produce results that are similar to those obtained with in-office whitening.
By using your custom-made take-home trays (which will be customized to fit the shape of your teeth), you will apply the bleaching formula to your teeth twice daily for a specified period of time, or until you achieve the desired results. The tray system gives the most flexibility to patients and allows them to whiten their teeth on their schedule. After that, a touch-up every few months is usually all that's needed to maintain a nice sparkle to your teeth.
Choosing between the two options is primarily a matter of personal preference, though your dentist might recommend the milder at-home option if you have sensitive teeth.
The results are the same with either option: professional teeth whitening, in most cases, produces an overall brighter and whiter appearance compared to over-the-counter options because it lightens the colour of your teeth in addition to removing stains. This is accomplished through the use of a more powerful bleaching formula, which your dentist has access to.