What's the Difference Between Professional Teeth Whitening and At-Home Kits?

Americans spend around $140 million a year at their dentist’s office on tooth whitening. This accounts for whitening done in office, and whitening done with dentist-prescribed pre-filled bleaching trays you can take home to do your teeth in. 

That doesn’t include the millions more spent on DIY at-home whitening kits, strips, and toothpaste or other products! But how do you know if you should browse the at-home whitening products at your local pharmacy, or get your teeth professionally whitened?

At the general and cosmetic dentistry office of Dr. Padmaja Yalamanchili in Fairfax, Virginia, you can get professional teeth whitening done in the dental chair with careful control of conditions for optimal results. She recommends in-office whitening, and here’s why. 

Professional teeth whitening uses a more effective process

Most teeth whitening solutions use hydrogen peroxide as the bleaching agent. At-home whitening kits are regulated to help prevent you from harming your teeth and gums. This means that the hydrogen peroxide content of your at-home kit is very low, whether you are using toothpaste, liquid filled trays, or strips. 

Dr. Yalamanchili is able to use a stronger process in her office, typically approved for use by dentists only. You’ll see some difference in the brightness of your teeth with a DIY kit, but not as much as if you had your teeth professionally whitened. After in-office whitening, results are usually much more noticeable.

Professional teeth whitening can be safer

One of the bigger hazards of at-home whitening kits is the risk of the bleaching agent leaking onto your gums. This can cause sensitivity, pain or even damage to your gum tissue. When you have your teeth whitened at our office, Dr. Yalamanchlili is able to carefully cover your gums with protection and prevent any of the bleaching agent from touching them during your treatment.  

Professional teeth whitening can deliver longer-lasting results

When you do your own teeth whitening at home, you’ll notice the effects wear off very quickly. You’ll have to commit to a daily or weekly routine to maintain the look of your teeth. When you get in-office whitening, the effects are more clear from the start, keep improving over the weeks following treatment, and can last for months if you have a good oral health care routine. If your teeth are significantly stained, you might have to have more than one visit. Maximum whitening can be achieved in an average of three visits, but many people are pleased with their results after just one visit. 

If you are ready to get your teeth whitened professionally and see what a hug different it can make in your smile, call our office at 703-213-5312 or book an appointment online today.

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