There are many products and techniques available for patients who want to achieve a brighter smile, and with so many options available, it can be difficult to choose the method that is right for you.
At-home teeth whitening can be done using various methods. They are:
Tray bleaching is a type of professional whitening procedure that uses custom-made trays and whitening gel only available at your dentist. The whitening gel is placed in custom-fitted trays that fit perfectly over your teeth. As the peroxide in the gel breaks down, hydroxyl radicals help whiten stained teeth. Unlike strips, this process whitens all your natural teeth and may contain ingredients intended to provide maximum comfort. At-home professional tray whitening generally takes ten to 14 days, although you may notice results in as little as three to five days.
There are many over-the-counter teeth whitening options, and one type of readily accessible whitening product is commonly referred to as a “paint-on” teeth whitener. Paint-on whiteners can be purchased over-the-counter and generally are less expensive and less effective than whitening strips or professional options. Paint-on teeth whiteners consist of a gel that is applied to the tooth using a small brush. Paint-on whitening gel hardens into a film that coats the teeth, and dissolves in the mouth. As with any teeth-whitening regimen, it is wise to consult with a dental professional before use.
The least expensive options are whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes. Designed to have “whitening” capabilities, these toothpastes and mouthwashes work to remove surface stains using mild abrasives. However, unlike the materials used in professional whitening procedures, these products do not lighten the actual color shade of the tooth. Whitening toothpastes affect surface stains and will mildly lighten your teeth.