Pearly white teeth are at the top of many people’s wish lists. In most situations, achieving great results when it comes to whiter teeth isn’t that difficult.
However, there are occasions when the best option for you is via professional laser whitening.
There are a variety of different ways to try and whiten your teeth. Some of these methods might or might not work for you.
Everything comes down to your preferences, the time you can deducted to your teeth, how much money you are willing to spend, or simply how hassle free you want this task to be.
About Laser Teeth Whitening
The number one thing that everyone turns to when they want to make their teeth whiter is changing their tooth paste over to a variety labeled as Whitening Toothpaste.
There are hundreds of different toothpastes on the market which are targeted for tooth whitening. Generally, these types of toothpastes contain hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide, which helps brighten your teeth by one shade.
This is usually about one-eighth of what a professional doctor visit can do for your teeth, just to put this into perspective.
Another method is through the use of over-the-counter Whitening Strips or Gels. The principle here is similar to whitening toothpastes in the sense that carbamide peroxide and hydrogen peroxide is the go to chemical to get those teeth nice and bright.
The big difference is that the gels and the strips usually contain a much higher concentration of one of these chemicals.
It’s usually mixed into the gel which can also contain pain numbing elements and flavoring to counteract the hint of peroxide.
You are supposed to go through application sessions with these strips or gels repeatedly over a period of time.
Depending on the concentrations of peroxide, each session might take anywhere from fifteen minutes all the way up to two hour, and in some cases you can even purchase low peroxide concentration strips or gels which can be applied for an overnight session.
Usually, the applications period can last anywhere from two weeks up to a month. The effectiveness level of this method is much better than whitening toothpastes.
This is due to the increased levels of the whitening chemicals and the amount of contact time between the teeth and the peroxide itself.
When you brush your teeth, the paste is there for only a few minutes, which is a limited amount of time to get your teeth white. With the gels or the strips this time is a lot longer, so the effect is much better as well.
Whitening Mouth Washes have also gained some popularity in the teeth whitening industry.
While most of them are still targeted towards reducing plague and other gum related diseases, the whitening rinses usually advertise to have whitening capabilities which can be seen within twelve weeks of use.
While we would love to believe this to be the absolute truth, most researchers speculate this type of teeth whitening isn’t very effective at all.
The contact time between the whitening chemical and your teeth is rather minuscule, and even if you increase the concentrations of peroxide in the mouth wash to the highest possible level without doing any major damage to your gums or the inside of your mouth
Over the Counter Tray Whiteners are also a possible solution to your teeth whitening dilemma.
These are very similar to the trays that a professional dentist would use during an office visit for teeth whitening.
They employ the same tactic that gels do. The trays are filled with a gel like substance which contains, once again, hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide.
The tray are then applied to your teeth and you let them sit there for a few minutes or an hour or two, depending on the type that you get, while your teeth get the treatment.
The main difference is that the gel like substance which comes with these trays can only go up to a certain concentration level before it is no longer allowed to be sold over the counter.
The other big difference between the at-home trays and in-office trays is that you have to custom mold these trays to fit your teeth as snugly as possible, which can be a difficult task.
Either way, this is probably the most effective at home method for whitening teeth, but it can also prove to be rather messy, especially if you are a first time user.
Professional In-Office Teeth Whitening is hands down the most effective way to get your teeth as white as possible.
Depending on the whitening method you choose, you can either have the tray method or the direct application method. We suggest the latter option as it also opens up the possibility to use a laser to get your teeth even whiter.
Most likely, your dentist will offer a few variations of different in-office whitening methods. The standard yearly whitening visit usually only involves the basic tray and gel treatment.
If you want to whiten your teeth further beyond the standard yearly visits, you will need to schedule a specific whitening appointment.
These appointments are usually more targeted towards better teeth whitening and the procedure usually involves the use of direct application and laser treatment.
Traditionally, the cost for the specific appointments is higher than the routine whitening visits.
They take between 30 to 60 minutes and require repeat visits to see drastic difference in teeth shades. However, even after the first visit you can see how much brighter your teeth look.
Teeth whitening solutions aren’t permanent, so you will need to whiten your teeth periodically, especially if you use one of the in-home methods.
The professional office appointments don’t need to be scheduled as often because of the effectiveness of this type of treatment.
In-Office VS At-Home Treatment
While some believe that an at-home teeth whitening solution is much better and easier to deal with then an in-office appointment, this may or may not be true for you.
Before choosing which method is best for you, you should consider some major differences between the two.
The first major difference between the two options is the concentration levels of the bleaching formula.
Because of the potential dangers that peroxide brings with it when used as a bleaching agent, most over the counter products will only go up to as high as about 25% carbamide peroxide in the mix.
Since your visit at the dentist is being supervised by a professional, this concentration number is allowed to be much higher, reaching as high as 45% depending on your teeth’s sensitivity.
This increased concentration level allows for an even more effective treatment, which results in whiter teeth with fewer needed visits.
The mouthpiece trays play a huge role in whitening teeth as well. As we mentioned earlier, the trays that you get over the counter need to be molded by you, which sometimes results in a less effective tray because you don’t have any practice doing it.
So the trays which you mold end up going over your gums or stay separated from some parts of your teeth line.
Then when you apply the bleaching solution, it ends up touching your gums more than necessary which can result in a lot of discomfort and sometimes even with damaged gums.
The parts of the tray that weren’t molded correctly to your teeth will allow for pockets of air to form in areas where there should be full contact between your teeth and the bleaching solution, which means your bleach won’t be as effective.
On the other hand, when you are at the dentist’s office, each tray is precisely molded for your teeth with years of practice and experience involved. This ensures the best possible whitening.
The use of additional medical or protective medicine is also an option. When at the office, your dentist can also employ the use of protective sensitivity numbing gels or medications which can help with the bleaching process.
No matter how you spin it, peroxide will cause some discomfort. These additional medications will help you get through these discomforts.
High power lasers are only available at your dentist’s office. Another thing that makes an in-office treatment much better than any other treatment is the fact that dentists have this wonderful heat laser tool which can highly increase the effectiveness of the bleaching gel.
While some in home kits do come with little LED heat lights, which are supposed to help the whitening process, their effectiveness is limited.
However, the professional grade lasers found at your dentist’s office aren’t a toy and are far more effective. Since this heat laser both speeds up and increases the effectiveness of the gel, it is very good that you are in a professional setting where proper precautions can be taken via application of sensitivity reducing medications.
What is the difference in cost of treatments, value, and comfort? It is true that most at-home treatments are cheaper than a professional appointment for teeth whitening.
However, the value of the in-office visit is most likely much better than that of all the different at-home whitening solutions.
The reason is very simple: you won’t have to go through the same treatment at the office nearly as often as you will with the at-home solutions. After you add everything up, the cost will most likely break even in the long-run.
There is also the safety factor that comes along with in-office treatments. You will be surrounded by professionals who know what they are doing and exactly how to perform each treatment in the safest way.
This means that all of the equipment will be sterilized and cleaned, the trays will be molded perfectly to avoid increased exposure on your gums, and the heat laser will be used properly without any mishaps.
You won’t have to hold on to any molded trays between sessions, which might increase the risk of germ contamination.
All the gels and medication will be well within functionality dates and you won’t have to worry about expiration.
Best of all, everything will stay at the dentist’s office. You won’t have to figure out where to store this potentially dangerous treatment paraphernalia so that your kids don’t get a hold of it and harm themselves.
Laser Teeth Whitening Review Summary
Every person is different in their own way. Some prefer to be at home and avoid visiting doctors or dentists as much as possible.
However, there is a reason why we have professionals who work with us and our bodies. They are trained in their respective fields with knowledge and experience that comes only with years of practice.
Whenever we work with potentially dangerous equipment or chemicals that might be harmful to us if used incorrectly, we have to understand the increased risks that we put ourselves in.
Our inexperience can end up producing unwanted issues which can be a nightmare to deal with. We will always suggest options which are safer for you and your loved ones.
This is exactly why we recommend visiting your dentist to get your teeth whitened in the most effective and safest way.
Your dentist will be able to determine which method is best for you through the use of your dental history. Judging from your specific situation, they will be able to determine the best course of action.
In the end, the decision is up to you. If you feel confident in your ability to use the over-the-counter products without any mishaps, then go for it. But if you think that something might go wrong or you would much rather let a professional handle it, then your dentist’s office is the right choice.
No matter the decision you make, we hope that you achieve your goals for whiter teeth with no complications. May your choppers always stay pearly white!