Teeth whitening may be accomplished with regular brushing, scaling, and polishing, but tooth bleaching can be considered if this is insufficient. Professional teeth whitening can be accomplished in one of two ways:
- In-office (clinical)
- Kits to take home
The benefits of in-office bleaching over at-home kits are numerous.
Techniques used in the workplace
Bleaching on a large scale
Power bleaching is a tooth whitening procedure that takes place in a dental office. The first power bleaching devices were implemented in the late 1980s, and they are appropriate for patients who have evenly coloured teeth and no intrinsic stains.
The benefit of in-surgery power bleaching is that the dentist will use highly concentrated gels (up to 37 percent Hydrogen Peroxide) while protecting your gums and cheeks from chemical burns. The higher concentration makes for whiter teeth and faster, longer-lasting outcomes. The process can be accelerated by using a light or heat source.
Teeth whitening is not recommended for teeth with intrinsic stains. The lighter stains will bleach quickly, while the darker stains will take longer to bleach, resulting in irregular and patchy colouration.
More complex dental procedures, such as dental veneers or composite veneers, maybe the best option for these teeth. Veneers are thin porcelain shells or tooth-coloured fillings that can be bonded to the teeth’s surface to disguise the natural colour of the teeth in a more controlled and functional manner.
Kits to take home
There are a variety of over-the-counter and dental professional-provided home teeth whitening kits available.
Take-home kits are typically less expensive, but they come with the drawback of requiring patient compliance. Patients must adhere to a high degree of compliance, applying the gel in the right quantities and daily. According to research conducted in the late 1990s in the United States, just 50% of patients were compliant and completed the entire course of take-home kits .
Take-home kits vs in-office techniques
The bleaching gel used in take-home kits has such low concentrations is one of the drawbacks. Take-home kits are only allowed to contain up to 6% hydrogen peroxide, making the whitening process sluggish and ineffective. You can experience painful chemical burns if the hydrogen peroxide concentration reaches 6%.
As previously mentioned, the second problem with take-home kits is patient enforcement. It is expected that you do it every day for 7 to 10 days in a row. If you skip a day, you’ll have to start the whole process over.
A significant percentage of users would fail to whiten their teeth on occasion, resulting in less-than-satisfactory outcomes. As a result, I usually avoid prescribing take-home packages.
When it comes to teeth whitening, how long does it last?
In most cases, in-surgery power bleaching lasts 18 months to two years. The device we use appears to last between two and three years. Most take-home kits require several applications to maintain the impact for more than six months.
Who shouldn’t have their teeth whitened?
Anyone under the age of 18 should stop having their teeth whitened. Teeth bleaching is not recommended for people under 17 because their teeth would be extremely sensitive .
Traditional teeth whitening treatments should be avoided by people with severely worn teeth because there isn’t enough enamel left to bleach.
Teeth whitening can also be avoided for those who have teeth that are very patchy with white spots. As previously mentioned, dental veneers should be seen as an alternative.
How much does teeth whitening cost in Singapore?
The price of teeth whitening in Singapore varies greatly. Teeth whitening costs about $100 at some of the beauty salons that sell it.
You should expect to pay between $450 and $900 for professional whitening. Bleaching costs anywhere from $600-$650 to more than $1000.
In the late 1990s, when Britesmile was first introduced to the market, one of our patients charged $2,800. Since then, the cost has fallen significantly, making it a process that is more accessible to all.
Is it possible to use Medisave to pay for teeth whitening?
Unfortunately, since it is a cosmetic operation, Medisave does not protect it.