What Happens During Professional Teeth Whitening?

What Happens During Professional Teeth Whitening?

Whether you smoke, drink coffee or you just have a yellowed smile due to age, our smiles may look a bit lackluster and require professional whitening. While it might seem tempting to try the vast majority of whitening treatments available over-the-counter, these are often ineffective at removing deep-set stains and they can cause severe sensitivity issues that can leave you in pain. Professional whitening is recommended to those who want to completely change their smile using prescription-strength ingredients.

The Consultation and Impressions

The first step in the whitening process is making a trip to the office for a consultation. Not everyone is a viable candidate for whitening, since the products are ineffective at whitening crowns, veneers and bridge work. After having the consultation, the dentist will take impressions of your teeth and send them off to a dental lab where custom-fit whitening trays are created for you. These custom-fit trays ensure that any and all whitening gel placed inside of them reaches every surface of the smile. You will then be given a prescription-strength whitening gel and sent home with both the trays and gel.

Receiving the Custom-Fit Trays and Using the Gel

It can take anywhere from one to two weeks for the custom-fit trays to be made for you. After they are sent back to the office, you’ll be sent home with the trays and a whitening gel. The dentist will instruct you on how to use the whitening gel and how often to whiten your teeth. For most patients, the trays may only need to be worn for about 30 minutes for roughly four to seven days. Most patients notice a significant difference after the first treatment and it’s not uncommon to have your teeth go up anywhere from four to seven color shades.


Unfortunately, the results you get from whitening your teeth aren’t permanent. Because of this, maintenance is required to extend your results and keep your smile looking its best. The dentist may send you home with whitening toothpaste or a whitening pen that can be used after treatment. Avoiding smoking, coffee and other staining foods and beverages can also help to extend your results.

Professional whitening is a lot more comfortable than other treatment options available and it is highly effective at stain removal. Instead of wearing slippery strips for weeks at a time, you have comfortable trays and prescription-strength whitening gel that is worn for just a few days. You will love having a smile that you can feel confident showing off thanks to the stain removal that has been done.