Today patients have never had more options for whitening their teeth , including over the counter preparations(Whitestrips), in-office light assisted tooth whitening(and hour or two) or using trays made be the dentist to be used at home to gradually lighten and whiten teeth(one to three weeks). It wasn’t always this easy.
In the 1980’s in -office light assisted bleaching was an option, but it was more time consuming , took many more sessions and was a much more expensive than it is today. Also, dentists had a procedure for lightening nonvital teeth,which sometimes provided acceptable results, but wasn’t good for healthy teeth. Accordingly, dentists looked for a better ,more affordable way and tray bleaching was developed using vinyl mouth guards designed for preventing tooth grinding and inserting a 10% carbamide peroxide solution in the tray and having the patient wear it over night for 3-6 weeks until the desired shade change had occurred.
Now, we have improved techniques and either in-office chairside tooth whitening or custom tray bleaching are relatively affordable and popular options. In our office we utilize the Zoom tooth whitening system for in office tooth bleaching procedures in an hour or two. Another system we find useful is the Nupro GoldWhitening System. We also like using a 16% carbamide solution placed in trays(custom tray bleaching) and worn at night to gradually lighten the teeth at night. All techniques have their limitations, but all work well!
Just this year we have added still another affordable and popular option- 15% Opalescence Go. This system uses stock disposable trays that are easy to use and a whiter and brighter smile can be accomplished by wearing them for as little as twenty minutes a day! We introduced this system less than eight months ago and it has become our patients favorite method to whiten their teeth.