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Professional Teeth Whitening vs. Drug Store Kits: What’s the Difference?

Having a Hollywood smile — that glistening pearly white you see in movies and magazines — isn’t impossible these days. And unlike nose jobs and chin tucks, teeth whitening is an option more and more regular folks are considering. It can profoundly improve your smile.

And it’s big business. Experts expect the global tooth whitening industry to hit $3.7 billion by 2021.

You’ve probably seen the kits in drugstores. While these can provide some benefit, it’s nothing compared to what a professional teeth whitening can achieve. Here are a few reasons a teeth whitening treatment at our Cincinnati dental clinic is worlds beyond a cheap DIY kit.

The Pre-Whitening Examination

Before you do a professional teeth whitening, a cosmetic dentist will schedule a thorough checkup and professional cleaning. This is done to address any potential cavities, plaque buildup or tartar that can disrupt the whitening process. Your dentist can also examine the surface of your teeth because cracks, tooth decay, or gum disease might be a sign that whitening isn’t your best option.

By doing the treatment yourself, you don’t properly prepare your teeth for best results. This can not only affect how white your teeth can get, but could cause oral health problems if your teeth aren’t great candidates.

Powerful Difference

The simple fact is a DIY drugstore approach cannot deliver the power of a professional teeth whitening. You can follow the directions to the letter. Even try it a few times — but it simply won’t deliver as thorough or as deep a whitening treatment. Any meaningful results will take a long time — and it won’t necessarily result in consistent whiteness.

Consistent Color

At home kits don’t always ensure consistent whitening across your entire smile. Your dentist can use whitening to blend with the overall color of your teeth so you get an improved smile that’s also natural in color without unsightly blemishes or stains.

Professional Hands

You’re probably not a dentist. There is no way you can deliver as consistent and as thorough a job as a trained dental professional. We do these treatments regularly. We’re trained and know what we’re doing.

Granted, a professional teeth whitening by someone trained in cosmetic dentistry will cost a bit more. But consider what you are getting for your money. It’s kind of like the difference between cutting your own hair and going to a salon. You might be able to walk away unscathed if you’re careful — but it will be nothing like what a professional stylist can do.

Know Your Limits

There are limits to professional teeth whitening. It is possible to whiten the teeth so much you end up damaging the enamel. If you’re using your own kit — especially if you do multiple treatments trying to get better results — you might cross the line and permanently damage your teeth.

A cosmetic dentist will not only be able to deliver a more effective treatment — they’ll know when it’s enough and what’s too much.

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