Teeth whitening

Teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental procedure that aims to remove stains and discoloration from teeth, resulting in a brighter and whiter smile.

There are two main types of dental whitening:

  • Take-home whitening
  • In-chair whitening
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Take-home whitening

Involves the use of custom-made trays that are fitted to the patient’s teeth. The trays are filled with a whitening gel that contains a low concentration of hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. Patients wear the trays for at least 1 hour each day, typically for one-two weeks, until they achieve the desired level of whitening. Take-home whitening is a convenient and cost-effective option for patients who prefer to whiten their teeth at home on their own schedule.

In-chair whitening

Also known as chairside whitening, is a faster and more intensive whitening treatment that is performed in a dental office. The procedure involves the application of a high-concentration hydrogen peroxide gel to the teeth, which is activated by a special light. The treatment typically takes around 90 minutes and can produce immediate results. In-chair whitening is a popular option for patients who want to achieve a whiter smile in a short amount of time.

Both take-home and in-chair whitening treatments have their advantages and disadvantages. Take-home whitening is a more gradual and gentle approach, which may be more suitable for patients with sensitive teeth. However, the treatment may take longer to achieve the desired results. In-chair whitening, on the other hand, is a faster and more intensive treatment that can produce dramatic results in a single visit. However, the procedure can be more expensive and may cause more temporary tooth sensitivity.

Ultimately, the choice between take-home and in-chair whitening depends on a variety of factors, including the patient’s budget, lifestyle, and desired level of whitening. It is important for patients to discuss their options with their dentist and choose a whitening treatment that is safe and effective for their individual needs.


The main side-effect of whitening is temporary teeth sensitivity. The level of sensitivity experienced varies greatly from person to person and depends on a few factors such as pre-existing sensitivity, gum recession, root abrasion, method of whitening.

If you do suffer from pre-existing tooth sensitivity, then you will be given some anti-sensitivity tooth paste to use for a few days prior to starting the procedure. You may also be recommended a lower concentration take-home whitening gel.

The number of shades that teeth can whiten varies from patient to patient. It depends on a variety of factors, such as the patient’s natural tooth color, the severity of the staining or discoloration, and the type of whitening treatment used. In general, dental whitening can improve tooth color by several shades, with some patients achieving up to 8 shades of improvement. However, it is important to note that the extent of whitening can vary and may not be completely predictable.

The longevity of dental whitening can vary depending on a variety of factors, such as the patient’s lifestyle and oral hygiene habits. Generally, dental whitening lasts around 1 year. However, it is relatively easy to re-whiten ones teeth with the take home kit (which is included as part of the in-chair whitening.

Patients can help maintain their results by avoiding foods and beverages that can stain teeth, such as coffee, tea, and red wine, and practicing good oral hygiene.

Ask our dental professionals for advice