If you are considering whitening your teeth, you probably know that there are lots of options to choose from. In this post, our Vancouver dentists discuss why they would likely recommend professional teeth whitening instead of over-the-counter white strips.
When compared to white strips, professional teeth whitening may be more expensive. However, it might be worth the extra expense if you are looking for convenience and effectiveness.
Teeth whitening strips that are available over-the-counter remove surface stains from your teeth, and you can easily pick up a box of them from the pharmacy without having to see your dentist.
Although these types of products have some advantages, they also have some disadvantages.
For starters, they can be difficult to use and can easily slip out of position. Moreover, some of the more advanced white strips can begin to get pricey. This can be extremely inconvenient to deal with! Furthermore, white strips may not effectively whiten all of your teeth. 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 significantly whiten your smile, white strips may not provide the results you are hoping for (according to some, mind you). This is due to the fact that they usually only remove some of the surface stains on your teeth and 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.