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At Olentangy Modern Dental, we get a lot of questions about teeth whitening. Many patients want to know whether professional whitening is really worth the cost when there are so many cheap over-the-counter (OTC) options and DIY “quick fixes” available. 

Here’s what we tell our patients when it comes to professional whitening vs. over-the-counter options and other remedies:

Professional Whitening Provides Better Overall Results

The first thing we’ll say is that, when you get your teeth professionally whitened, you will get the best possible results based on your level of staining and the desired whiteness of your teeth. At our office, every whitening treatment is customized to each patient.

We will work with you to select the proper teeth whitening compound and we will use custom trays that help distribute the product evenly across all of your teeth. The end result will be a smile that’s much brighter, without looking unnatural. 

With a take-home or in-office whitening treatment from Olentangy Modern Dental, you may be able to brighten your teeth by up to 5-10 shades in a single treatment. In contrast, OTC whitening kits use a “one-size-fits-all” approach. You will not get any custom trays, and you’ll have to use whatever teeth whitening gel came in the kit, no matter what concentration of peroxide (whitener) it uses. In addition, some take-home kits do not whiten all of your teeth evenly, but primarily whiten your six upper and lower front teeth, which are the most visible when you smile. 

OTC Whitening Is Cheaper – But You Get What You Pay For!

Of course, the biggest benefit of DIY whitening is the cost. Quick fixes are always a lot cheaper than seeing a professional. However, there are a few important things to consider. Most OTC teeth whitening kits will take a lot longer to achieve the same results that you would get from a single in-office whitening treatment. You may have to use multiple OTC kits over a period of several weeks or months to achieve similar results. 

If you consider all of the time you’ll have to spend treating yourself, and the fact that you may have to buy multiple teeth whitening kits, the price of professional whitening is much better in the long run.

Depending On The Kit You Use, DIY Whitening Can Be Dangerous!

There are some teeth whitening kits out there that use a reasonable (5-10%) concentration of peroxide, which is not very dangerous to your teeth. Some kits, like Crest Whitestrips, have even been certified as safe by the ADA.

But there are other whitening kits out there, mostly available online, which use an extremely high concentration of peroxide – sometimes 40% or higher. This is higher than the kits that most dentists use! If you use these kits improperly, you can over-whiten your teeth, causing them to become brittle and chalky. If the peroxide contacts your gums, you can also damage your gums and cause serious pain and irritation. 

Professional Whitening Is The Best Choice For Great Results!

OTC whitening can have inconsistent, slow results, and even can damage your teeth. For that reason, we highly recommend that you come into Olentangy Modern Dental for a consultation if you’re interested in teeth whitening. Dr. Gavin will ensure you get the smile you’ve always wanted, and will keep your smile safe and healthy throughout the whitening process! Contact us now at (740) 200-5100 for more information, or stop by our office at 7100 Graphics Way, Suite 3800, Lewis Center, OH 43035 to schedule your appointment.