Laser teeth whitening: Is it for you?

23 August 2018
 Categories: Dentist, Blog

There are many methods of teeth whitening available, from pastes and strips that can be applied at home to trays and other bleaching methods available in the dentist's chair. One recent method that is becoming increasingly popular is laser whitening. Is this a method you should consider?

The process

Laser whitening can only be carried out by a dentist. Bleach is applied to each tooth, and laser light is then applied, which activates the bleach and enhances its effectiveness. While the procedure takes place, you may be fitted with cheek retractors and rubber protectors for your lips and gums, and your dentist may use other desensitizing pastes, to ensure there is no discomfort during the treatment.

The pros

Firstly, the process works very quickly. The results are visible immediately, which means you can decide at the end of each session if you have achieved the results you want or if further sessions will be necessary. Most other methods work by a gradual process, which will only work over time.

The treatment will also not interfere with your everyday life. Home methods such as strips and trays usually involve keeping the device in your mouth for a period of time. Although your dentist may recommend such a method on top of the laser whitening, they should not be necessary, and the treatment should be finished as soon as you leave the surgery.

Finally, the effect can be very long lasting. Provided you carry out good oral hygiene, laser whitening can last for years.

The cons

The main drawback is the cost. Laser whitening is one of the most expensive methods of whitening available, and as it is a cosmetic treatment it is very unlikely to be covered by your dental insurance.

Also, the method is not suitable for everyone. You will have to undergo a dental examination to find out if you are a suitable candidate, and if you have any underlying dental problems, these will need to be fixed first. Like all cosmetic treatments, laser whitening will not fix any issues that need treatment, such as tooth decay or gum disease.

The cost of laser whitening will rule it out for many people, but if you can afford it, the effects on your smile can be well worth it. As always, the key is to discuss your cosmetic dentistry options with a professional and find the whitening method that will work best for you.