Teeth Whitening: In the Clinic or Over the Counter?

These days, various teeth whitening products can be found almost everywhere you look, whether they’re in the form of a strip, gel, toothpaste or tray.

But how much do you really know about these at-home whitening methods, and how effective are they compared to an in-clinic appointment with your cosmetic dentist?

Here, we break down the process of each experience so you know what to expect.

In-clinic teeth whitening

Visiting the dentist for an in-clinic teeth whitening procedure can be a simple and effective way of getting those gleaming pearly whites you’ve been dreaming of.

Many people can get their desired results after just one visit in less than an hour, as a professional teeth whitening treatment has several advantages over the at-home kind.

The treatment involves applying a whitening gel carefully to the teeth, and a special UV lamp to speed up the process for visibly brighter results. Depending on the initial impact and how much lighter you want your teeth to be, the process can be repeated 2-3 times.

Dental technology also works to minimise the sensitivity of teeth during the procedure, ensuring that the treatment is non-invasive and painless while delivering results up to 12 shades lighter than your existing colour.

To see for yourself how effective professional whitening treatments can be, have a look at this gallery of before and after results.

At home teeth whitening

On the other hand, there are a variety of teeth whitening products designed to be used at home and can be purchased over-the-counter without a visit to the dentist.

Whitening toothpastes are some of the most common products and typically contain some chemical agents or mildly abrasive substances to remove stains from the surface of teeth.

Peroxide-based clear whitening gels are designed to be used with your toothbrush. They can provide gradual results over a few days. Whitening trays complete with a gel whitening solution are also available, although these aren’t custom-fitted for your teeth and also require more time for the results to be seen.