The teeth whitening trend is a growing one that is very popular and continues to expand in the UK. There are different ways to get the pearly white teeth that are so desirable. It is possible to buy over-the-counter products or to have a dentist perform the power whitening that is so popular. Each of these procedures has its own cost, ranging from about $50 all the way up to thousands of pounds. All of the ways to get shinier, cleaner-looking teeth work to some degree, but the procedure performed at the dentist’s office is the fastest, most effective, longest lasting, and most expensive.
Some dental offices offer a pre-treatment consultation for only $24, a reduction from the usual $200 price. At this time, the dentist examines the teeth and gums and consults with the patient to see what the patient’s goal is for teeth whitening. If all is well with the teeth and gums, the procedure is scheduled. It usually requires about three appointments before the whitening is completed. At that time, a strong but harmless hydrogen peroxide solution is placed in a mold that has been specially made for the patient. It conforms to the shape of their mouth and teeth in an exact way to ensure that each and every tooth is whitened. Besides sitting in the dentist’s chair with the solution on the teeth, some dentists also use a laser light that is focused on the teeth to activate the peroxide gel.
The cost for treatment at a dentist’s office is usually around $1,000 or more. Individual treatments begin at about $400, but one treatment is not usually enough. If power whitening is desired, this is a one-time procedure that lasts for about two to three years. The cost for this treatment is about $1,500.
Dentists offer another service that is just as effective as having the procedure done in their office. They offer take-home kits with a customized mold that they have made especially for a patient’s mouth. The hydrogen peroxide is then placed into the mold and worn at specific times at home. Although this procedure takes longer to achieve the desired results, it may cost much less. Some dentists in the UK offer kits beginning at $195.
Over-the-counter products or those purchased online also offer some improvement in the brightness of the smile, although most do only a small fraction of what the professional treatment can do. There are gels that are applied and left on the teeth for a certain amount of time. Many of these are in the form of toothpaste. They form an invisible film that works by removing coffee, tea, and wine stains from the teeth. They work mainly by dissolving stains and grit that may be on the surface of the teeth, but most do not whiten from within. A toothpaste product is available for about $15 and up.
There are also paint-on products that are in small bottles like nail polish. These also remove surface stains and may whiten to some degree. The price for these starts at about $15 and can go up to about $35.
One of the best over-the-counter products that whiten teeth is a kit that has whitening strips. These have peroxide on the strips that are placed in the mouth for a certain amount of time. The price is about $50. In addition, there are kits with one-size trays that are similar to the ones that dentists make, except that they are only available in one size. They are filled with whitening solution and left on the teeth to lighten and brighten them. These cost about $50 as well.
Most people agree that having a dentist perform the procedure is by far the best way to get whiter teeth. The results from professional treatment last years, whereas over-the-counter products last only one or two months, if that long.