370 E South Temple, Ste 325 Salt Lake City, UT 84111

Everyone wants to have a beautiful, brilliant, white smile. But what if your teeth are more on the yellow side? Teeth whitening is a safe, effective, cost-efficient option for those looking to brighten their teeth. Keep reading to learn how teeth whitening works. 

Teeth Whitening Basics

Whitening is accomplished through bleaching. Whitening products contain a certain percentage of bleach, which attacks the yellow stains on your teeth and breaks them down to make them appear more white. Some offices will pair the bleaching gel with an LED light to complement the whitening process. 

It’s important to keep in mind that whitening will not work on all teeth. Teeth whitening works best on yellow teeth because yellowing is usually due to stains. On the other hand, brown and gray teeth which are discolored for reasons other than stains may not brighten much when bleached. 

If you are unsure whether teeth whitening will be effective for you, contact us at South Temple Dental. Our professionals will be glad to help you make the best decision.

The Science Behind Teeth Whitening

Most teeth whitening products contain peroxide-based whitening agents. According to McGill University, peroxide passes into the tooth and takes “the electrons that hold the atoms together, which in turn cause the staining molecules to fall apart.”

The amount of peroxide in whiteners varies. In general, WebMD reports that most home whitening systems contain 3–20% peroxide, but the treatments you can get at your local dentist’s office are likely to contain 15–43% peroxide. In other words, at-home bleaching kits are much less potent than the whitening treatments you can receive when overseen by a dentist.

At-Home Treatments 

As mentioned, at-home treatments are less powerful than whitening treatments you can receive in a dental office. They are usually cheaper than professional alternatives, but it can take longer to see results, and the results may not be as long-lasting. 

Here are some of the at-home whitening options available to you. 

Whitening Toothpaste

  • Pro: Inexpensive and easily available
  • Con: Usually do not contain bleaching agents
  • Con: Only lighten teeth a little bit (about one shade)
  • Con: Usually not left on the teeth long enough to have much of an effect

Whitening Strips and Gels

  • Pro: Contains peroxide
  • Pro: Inexpensive
  • Con: Can take up to two weeks to see results
  • Con: Results last only a few months

Bleaching Trays

  • Pro: Contains peroxide
  • Pro: Cheaper than professional alternatives
  • Con: Bleaching trays can still cost a few hundred dollars (especially if they are fitted to your mouth)
  • Con: You may have to wear the bleaching tray in your mouth for multiple hours every day
  • Con: Treatment process can take upwards of four weeks

In-Office Treatments

Whitening performed by a dentist in-office can have much more rapid results. Usually, patients can see dramatic results after the first treatment. 

At South Temple Dental, we offer whitening treatments for about $399 per session. Sessions last between 60 and 90 minutes. 

Here’s How Teeth Whitening Works at Our Office

  • Assess: We’ll examine your teeth before whitening. We’ll make sure that the whitening will be effective on the shade of your teeth. 
  • Prepare and Protect: We’ll polish your teeth to make sure they’re ready to receive the whitening solution. To avoid any discomfort, we’ll protect your gums and lips from coming into contact with the whitener. 
  • Whiten: We’ll carefully apply the solution to your teeth and wait the necessary amount of time for the whitening agent to penetrate and brighten your smile.
  • Wash: You’ll be able to rinse your teeth and discover your shiny, bright, new smile!

Choose South Temple Dental for Teeth Whitening

For effective teeth whitening with fast and dramatic results, visit our Salt Lake City office at South Temple Dental.