How Professional Teeth Whitening Is Done

Many people strive to have a bright white smile. However, many factors can start to dull the color of teeth, including aging and what we eat. To maintain white teeth, you can do a few things, including teeth whitening at the dentist. Teeth whitening has risen in popularity over the past decade, and it is not just the A-listers that can obtain that Hollywood smile. 

There are many kinds of toothpaste and over the counter products that claim to help you achieve a whiter smile. Still, your family dentist is likely to offer professional services that can help make it possible. 

If you are considering professional teeth whitening and want answers to questions such as what do dentists use to whiten teeth, we have some FAQs to give you some insight.

Do dentists whiten teeth in-office?

Yes. Many dentists offer the option of professional teeth whitening services on-site. There is also the option for professional at-home kits that are provided by your dentist. 

How do dentists whiten teeth in-office? 

In-Office Teeth Whitening

If you are choosing a professional in-office whitening service, there are several steps that are performed, including:

  • The dentist will make a record of the shade of your teeth.
  • Your teeth will be cleaned and polished to remove plaque from the surface.
  • Gauze will be inserted into your mouth to ensure your teeth stay dry, and retractors may be used to safeguard your cheeks and tongue do not touch the whitening solution. 
  • The gum line will also be protected. 
  • Your teeth are then coated in the whitening solution. 
  • The solution is then often cured with a light or laser, and this is left for 30 to 60 minutes. 
  • When the teeth reach the desired brightness, your mouth is rinsed. You may also be given an application of fluoride to help with sensitivity that may occur after treatment. 
  • This process may be repeated depending on the desired color that you want to achieve. 

What bleach do dentists use to whiten teeth?

The whitening solution that is used is typically hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. This acts as a bleaching agent. 

How long to whiten teeth at dentist?

The procedure to whiten teeth at the dentist's office typically takes between 60-90 minutes. There may also be several appointments needed to obtain the required color (depending on the original shade of teeth). 

How to whiten teeth with dentist at-home professional kits

At home teeth whitening trays

Many dental services offer the option of teeth whitening kits to use at home. One of the main benefits of this is the lower costs. In-office services are more expensive as there is a range of equipment used, and your dentist conducts the treatment. 

With a professional at-home teeth whitening kit from your dentist, you can enjoy the results of a brighter smile but without visiting the office. 

How do professional at-home teeth whitening kits work?

  • Your dentist will take an impression or mold of your teeth. 
  • This impression will be used to make a bleaching tray that fits your teeth perfectly. The bleaching trays take around one to two weeks to create. 
  • When you receive your tray, your dentist will explain how to use it and provide instructions on applying the whitening gel and where to place it. 
  • The trays are typically used for around an hour a day for approximately two weeks (depending on the desired effect and dentist recommendation). 

How effective are professional at-home teeth whitening kits?

Many people notice a remarkable difference in the color of their teeth after the at-home teeth whitening process. A professional kit provides better results than over the counter drugstore brands. Plus, you have a bleaching kit creating specifically for your teeth impression, so there are a more precise application and results. 

It is always best to avoid over the counter at-home products if you are unsure of the quality. Some products have been known to damage teeth and gums when not used properly. 

What to avoid after teeth whitening treatments

Whether you are undertaking professional in-office whitening treatments or opting for a professional at-home whitening kit, there are some things to avoid immediately after treatments. These include:

  • Drinking coffee, tea, tomato juice, and red wine.
  • Eating candy, beets, black grapes, and yellow mustard.
  • Smoking 

Do teeth whitening treatments get immediate results?

Everyone's teeth are different, which means that no dentist can guarantee that results will be immediately the desired color on the first treatment, so be patient and persevere. 

Do teeth whitening cause sensitivity?

During teeth whitening treatments, one of the most common side effects is sensitivity.  However, this is generally temporary. To reduce this, using a sensitive toothpaste can help until it settles down. 

There may also be some whiteness or soreness on the gums, but this again will subside. 

If you are using an at-home professional teeth whitening kit, it is essential to closely follow the instructions. If you use too much gel in the bleaching tray, wipe any excess away to avoid contact with your gums, as this can lead to irritation. 

What is the recommended whiteness for natural-looking teeth?

Everyone is different, so your dentist can help you decide on the desired shade if you are looking to achieve a natural-looking but brighter shade. You can opt for subtle variances and also go for the Hollywood Glow, but this is a personal decision on what look you want to achieve. 

How long do the results last?

Once you have completed your treatment and reached the desired color, results can last for many years. The key to improving the shade's longevity is to eat a cleaner diet and avoid food and drink that will stain your teeth. It is also a good idea to visit your dentist every six months for general check-ups. If you want to top-up your whitening treatment, your dentist can advise you on the best course of action. When maintaining a bright white smile, the main takeaway is to look after your teeth well and keep on top of dental check-ups and thorough cleaning.