Custom-fit trays keep the whitening solution on the surface of the tooth to be whitened, and allow for only slight exposure of the solution to the sensitive gingival area. The cost of take-home whitening is considerably lower than in-office whitening.
The Procedure for Obtaining a Take-Home Whitening Kit
The typical procedure followed in the dental office to obtain an in-home teeth whitening kit would be:
- Impressions are taken of your upper and lower teeth and sent to the dental laboratory to make your trays. It will normally take 1 to 2 weeks for the dental lab to make your trays. The initial shade of your teeth is recorded in your dental chart for comparison when whitening has been completed.
- An appointment will be made to show you how to dispense the teeth whitening solution in the trays and give you detailed instructions to follow. Take-home teeth whitening is typically used one hour a day for two weeks, and can be used for touch-up applications thereafter. Certain brands may be worn overnight for your convenience. Always brush and floss your teeth before placing the trays in your mouth, and avoid eating, drinking, or smoking while wearing the trays and for approximately 30 minutes after teeth whitening.
- A follow-up appointment is made to track your results and determine the final shade of your teeth.
An alternative option to take-home teeth whitening kits is professional in-office teeth whitening. In-office tooth whitening is typically more expensive than at-home options, and it often requires multiple visits to a dentist's office.
However, in-office treatment is often extremely effective.
Professional teeth whitening delivers optimum whitening results in a short amount of time. Available under the supervision of a dentist, this method of tooth whitening is gaining popularity, despite the fact that it is considered the most expensive method of chemically whitening your teeth.
Process: During an in-office teeth whitening session, the teeth are then coated with the whitening solution on the front surface of the tooth. The individual office may choose to use either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide as the bleaching agent. Many whitening products require a curing light or laser to be used to add heat to the solution to activate the peroxide. It will then be left on the teeth for 30 to 60 minutes, or reapplied in specific increments of time for up to one hour, depending on the brand.