Professional Teeth Whitening Vs. At-home Products

woman wearing striped shirt smiling, white teeth

You are not alone if you are looking for ways to get the shine back on your teeth. Many people want a whiter and brighter smile but are hesitant about spending money on professional teeth whitening. They assume they can achieve the same results with an OTC whitening kit. However, how do at-home teeth whitening products compare with professional teeth whitening? 


Benefits of White Teeth


One of the most popular cosmetic treatments in the U.S. is teeth whitening. There are good reasons for this obsession with whiter teeth. These include:


  • A more attractive smile

  • More confidence

  • A more youthful appearance

  • Improved personal and dating life


A brighter smile can lead to more opportunities for career advancement. Studies suggest that job applicants with attractive smiles are likelier to get jobs and receive better salary offers than those with unattractive teeth. 


Teeth Whitening Options


The options fall into two categories, i.e., at-home teeth whitening and professional teeth whitening. There are pros and cons to each option, so it is best to consult your dentist before beginning any treatment plan. Some of the factors to consider include:


Pre-whitening Examination


Dental professionals recommend a dental checkup and cleaning before trying to whiten your teeth. Cavities, plaque, and tartar can prevent teeth from achieving the desired whiteness. It is best to address any dental problems before proceeding with any whitening procedure. 


That is because people with cracks, gum disease, and tooth decay are not good candidates. With in-office teeth whitening, your dentist will address such issues before proceeding with the whitening treatment. You will also learn about dietary habits that may prevent you from achieving and maintaining your desired results. 




At-home whitening kits seem like the cheaper option. However, the cost can quickly add up in the long run since most of these kits require daily use to achieve and maintain whiter teeth. On the other hand, professional treatments provide faster results and last longer. 




In-office treatments are always safer than at-home whitening kits. You will be less anxious about your oral health when you visit your dentist for whitening treatment. Furthermore, your dentist has the most effective whitening products for a whiter smile. Your dentist will use a dental dam to protect your gums during the procedure and give you tips on how to prevent tooth sensitivity. 


You can damage your gums and tooth enamel if you try to use at-home products without properly following the directions. That can lead to irritated and painful gums and increased tooth sensitivity. 


Not everyone is a good candidate for teeth whitening because of the products used. That is why it is best to schedule an appointment with your dentist. For example, nursing or pregnant women should defer the treatment to avoid inadvertently exposing themselves to any potentially harmful chemicals in the teeth whitening solution.




Dental professionals use more potent bleaching products to whiten teeth faster. They may also use a laser to heat the bleaching agent and accelerate the whitening process. These treatments outrank all at-home whiteners, from whitening trays to whitening toothpaste. 


Even Color


At-home kits do not always ensure even coloration, especially if you overuse the products. Also, they are not ideal for people with porcelain or composite crowns. The best way to prevent uneven teeth coloration is through professional cosmetic dentistry. 


For more on teeth whitening, visit Marietta Smile Gallery at our office in Marietta, Georgia. Call 770-809-1500 to schedule an appointment today.