According to studies, in 2015, Americans spent over $1.4 billion on at-home whitening products for their teeth. These include dentist-prescribed, at-home custom teeth whitening trays and over-the-counter teeth whitening products. This statistic highlights the need for at-home teeth whitening, however, it fails to capture just how many of these products are successful.
There are a lot of at-home teeth whitening products out there. However, many of them are largely ineffective because tooth discoloration may happen for various reasons, and most over-the-counter teeth whitening products only bleach the surface. Some of them also contain harsh chemicals that can be harmful.
The best way to ensure safe results is to seek professional teeth whitening at a dentist’s office. However, some people prefer at-home products. In that case, you should know exactly which at-home whitening product to use and how to use it.
What is At-Home Dentist Teeth Whitening?
At-home dentist teeth whitening refers to the process of using professional dentist-prescribed teeth whitening trays and kits to brighten your teeth. These dentist-prescribed, at-home teeth whitening kits have a high concentration of hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide, which makes them more effective and also more expensive than over-the-counter teeth whitening kits. A professional at-home teeth whitening kit also comes with custom-fitted dental trays so that the whitening gel can remain on the surface of the teeth longer and protect the gums from the gel. At-home dentist teeth whitening is easy to use, and you can generally see improvements in two weeks.
How to Use At-Home Custom Teeth Whitening Trays
Professional at-home dentist teeth whitening can’t be found in stores because they use at-home custom teeth whitening trays that have to be manufactured specifically according to the contours of your teeth. You need these contoured trays because that’s the only way to ensure that the whitening gel gets into every corner of your teeth and nowhere else. Without them, the solution may get on your gums or may be wasted.
When opting for at-home dentist teeth whitening, you need to go through these steps:
Visit your nearest dental clinic. They’ll take impressions of your upper and lower teeth using a non-toxic dental putty. The impressions will then be sent to laboratories to create custom dental trays — the whole process should take one or two weeks.
The dentist will also record your teeth’s shade so it can be compared to the final product later.
Once the whitening trays are prepared, you’ll be called over to demonstrate how to use the at-home custom teeth whitening trays.
You must brush, floss, and rinse thoroughly every time before application of the dental trays.
You have to wear the at-home custom teeth whitening trays for approximately one hour every day for two weeks. You may also be given a tray that you can wear throughout the night. You should not eat, drink, or smoke while the trays are on, or for around 30 minutes after taking them off.
After two weeks, you will return to the dentist so they can track your whitening progress. If necessary, more whitening solution may also be used for touch-ups.
Other At-Home Teeth Whitening Kit Products
In addition to at-home dentist teeth whitening trays, there are many other teeth whitening products you can also use. Most of them are available over the counter and you don’t even need a dentist’s prescription. However, these methods aren’t very effective, especially if you have deeper stains.
At-Home Dental Whitening Strips
At-home dental whitening strips are membranous films coated with a bleaching gel that you have to wear on your teeth. They don’t have to be custom-made, and you can even wear them during work because they’re not very obtrusive. However, these strips come with various issues:
They can’t remove stains between the teeth.
They may not whiten your teeth evenly and may miss some parts of your teeth, which can give an uneven impression.
They may not be able to cover all of your teeth.
They’re not suitable for crooked teeth.
Saliva can get under the strips and dilute the whitening solution, making it ineffective.
Brush-on whitening provides instant whitening from fresh stains. You simply use these pens over your teeth after you’ve had a meal to get rid of fresh stains. They’re popular because they’re easy to use, and you can simply apply them as you would a lip balm — but they can only remove fresh surface stains, making them ineffective for long-term teeth whitening for deeper stains.
You may also ask your dentist to prescribe special toothpaste with peroxide, abrasives, or special bleaching agents. They can be used to maintain white teeth, but they can’t be used to whiten considerably yellow teeth.
At-Home Teeth Whitening FAQs
What is the best teeth whitening kit to do at home?
What can I use to whiten my teeth at home?
Having yellow teeth, how long does it take to get them white?
How do I whiten my teeth without destroying enamel?
The best teeth whitening kit to do at home is one that’s prescribed by your local dentist.
There are several ways to whiten your teeth at home — you can use at-home custom teeth whitening trays, whitening strips, brush-on whitening, and abrasive toothpaste. All of them have different levels of effectiveness, depending on your teeth.
The amount of time it takes for yellow teeth to get white depends on the type of procedure you use and the type of stains you have. Surface stains can be removed pretty easily within a week. However, deeper stains may take a lot longer. If you use at-home custom teeth whitening trays, your teeth may become whiter in two weeks or more.
You can whiten your teeth without destroying your enamel by visiting your local dentist and consulting them about your options. Professional teeth whitening options are usually safe, and they whiten teeth while preserving the enamel.