At Home Teeth Whitening- The Importance of Dentist Supervision
I’m Dr. Scott Williams and I practice family and cosmetic dentistry in Greeley CO. We also serve the Eaton, Windsor, Evans and Kersey CO. At home teeth whitening has become an attractive alternative to in-office bleaching, and for obvious reasons. It offers patients a convenient, portable and affordable whitening method that they can employ wherever they choose. However, as the popularity of at-home teeth whitening has steadily increased, so too has the number of companies seeking to capitalize on the industry’s growth and success. These companies have flooded the marketplace with over-the-counter whitening products, leaving consumers to fend for themselves when it comes to selecting an appropriate option.
Furthermore, the commercial offerings are typically “one size fits all” and fail to account for an individual’s specific dental structure or needs. No two sets of teeth are perfectly alike, and no single product can optimally suit two individuals. Commercial teeth whitening kits or trays convey only some of the benefits of customized whitening products, while presenting risks that are otherwise preventable with proper dental supervision.
At Home Teeth Whitening: Dental Supervised or Commercial?
Dentists pioneered the at home whitening process long before the mass production of commercial whitening trays. And unlike the commercial counterparts, the whitening trays produced by dentists are tailored to the specific dental needs of individual patients. Instead of mass producing a single product irrespective of an individual’s oral anatomy, a teeth whitening dentist first performs a complete oral exam to determine the type and extent of stains and to assess the individual’s teeth structure.
He or she then produces customized teeth whitening trays, molded to the patient’s precise dental specifications.The custom trays ensure the teeth whitening agent is applied directly to the affected or stained areas; in fact, the dentist may even allocate the teeth whitening gel within the tray consistent with the location and extent of prominent at home teeth whitening custom tray stains or discolorations.
If the desired goal is thorough and effective teeth whitening, custom trays are second to none. By replicating the patient’s unique tooth contours and overall bone structure, the custom tray provides a perfect fit. This ensures the teeth whitening gel is applied only to the intended areas, while also keeping the tray fixed firmly in place. Whereas commercial teeth whitening trays are never designed to accommodate a particular individual, custom trays always account for a patient’s singular wants and needs.
When it comes to at home teeth whitening trays, a perfect fit provides far more than comfort alone. While the precise molding certainly prevents discomfort from tray edges rubbing against the gum line, it also keeps the bleaching agent on the affected teeth and thus minimizes the risk of incidental exposure to sensitive gum tissue. A commercial whitening kit often contains between 10 and 22 percent carbamide peroxide content, which is roughly equivalent to three percent hydrogen peroxide, and can cause significant irritation if it contacts the gums.
Since the commercial trays often fit poorly, the risk of incidental exposure is significant. Because a dentist’s custom trays achieve a perfect fit, the dentist can apply a whitening agent containing hydrogen peroxide in concentrations up to 43 percent, a more than tenfold increase over the commercial offerings. As such, the custom trays simultaneously minimize the risk of incidental contact with gum tissues, while also maximizing the effectiveness of the whitening process itself.
A customized whitening tray ensures the bleaching agent is applied evenly and completely, producing a uniform result that is unmatched by commercial imitators. The molded tray is designed around the patient’s unique dental characteristics and fits snugly on each and every individual tooth. This guarantees the tray stays fixed, and the whitening gel is dispersed evenly amongst the patient’s teeth. The resultant smile is singularly sparkling, with a complete and even whitening effect.
If an individual is truly serious about getting the best results from teeth whitening, dentist supervision is an absolute necessity. A white and healthy-looking smile is aesthetically pleasing and has become increasingly important to most consumers. At home teeth whitening offers tremendous convenience, but it also requires a discerning consumer to think carefully about the available options.
The “one size fits all” approach championed by commercial whiteners ignores the fundamental truth that all mouths (and smiles) are unique; each deserves the individualized treatment necessary for optimal results. At- home teeth whitening is ultimately most successful when conducted under the watchful eye of a knowledgeable and attentive dentist who can customize the approach to suit individual needs.
Dr. Scott Williams invites you to call Ascent Family Dental today to begin your dental supervised at home teeth whitening for a brighter smile that will get you noticed.
You may reach us at:
Greeley, CO 80634