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Laser teeth whitening is a cosmetic laser dentistry procedure. It's a professional teeth whitening treatment that should be performed at a dental clinic.
The procedure involves applying a concentrated whitening gel and a laser to heat it. This activates the chemicals in the gel, which whitens your teeth quickly.
Most in-office teeth whitening products, like ZOOM! and Sapphire, use light from a blue LED, not a laser. Both techniques may appear to have similar steps, but they function differently.
In whitening techniques using LEDs, blue light activates the bleaching gel during the whitening process. This includes those products you can use at home.
With laser teeth whitening, the same is true, but the light is much narrower and produces more heat. Since one tooth can be treated at a time, the result is a faster overall whitening effect.
Learn about the safest ways to whiten your teeth.
Here are some pros and cons of laser teeth whitening:
There are less expensive at-home solutions if you do not want to invest in laser teeth whitening.
Other popular teeth whitening methods include:
See NewMouth’s top 10 teeth whitening products of 2022.
Laser teeth whitening is a professional treatment that usually provides quicker results than at-home treatments. However, it's not the best option for everyone. Here are some differences between professional and at-home treatments to help you with your decision:
At-home teeth whitening treatments can be more convenient than laser whitening treatments. Most reputable at-home teeth whitening brands are available online, allowing you to order and use them without leaving the comfort of your home.
At-home teeth whitening treatments can take several uses before you can see results. This can be a disadvantage when you compare it to laser treatments, which can give visible results after just one session.
A dentist must perform laser whitening because it uses a much higher concentration of bleaching agents. This high-strength gel can cause chemical burns on the mouth's soft tissues, so a dentist's oversight is mandatory.
On the other hand, some at-home whitening products are bought over the counter, while others are only available through prescription. However, these at-home products are safe to use without a dentist's oversight.
Remember to be careful when using at-home whitening products, especially when you have sensitive teeth. Read all the instructions on the product and follow them carefully to avoid potential problems.
According to the American Dental Association Survey of Dental Fees 2020, the cost of in-office teeth whitening ranges from $262 to $1,180. The average fee is $594.
The cost of laser teeth whitening is tough to pin down. Since it's a cosmetic procedure and not covered by dental insurance companies, there is no “standard” fee. A reasonable price for laser teeth whitening will likely fall within the $600 to $800 range.
Certain factors may affect the cost of laser teeth whitening, such as:
Laser teeth whitening is completed in a dental office, and the procedure consists of a few simple steps:
You must properly care for your teeth after a laser teeth whitening procedure to maintain your results. Drink only clear liquids after your laser teeth whitening session for at least two hours.
You should also avoid the following:
Laser teeth whitening is a safe and effective procedure. However, it can cause minor and short-lived side effects, including:
It's rare for these side effects to be severe, but it is possible in some people. Avoid eating and drinking anything overly hot or cold for a few days after the procedure to prevent these adverse effects.
Here are some potential complications of laser teeth whitening:
There’s a slight risk that the heat generated by the laser could damage the pulp of the tooth or other tissues. However, professional care and laser settings are intended to prevent this.
Allergic reactions, though rare, are also possible. Some people may be allergic to specific gel components used during the procedure.
You may not be recommended teeth whitening treatment if you have amalgam fillings. The whitening gel could trigger a release of mercury from the fillings.
No evidence suggests that laser teeth whitening is safe or unsafe for pregnant women. However, it may be best to hold off on teeth whitening treatments until the baby is born.
Pregnancy can increase tooth sensitivity due to erosion from frequent vomiting. Undergoing a laser teeth whitening treatment in this state can damage the teeth.
Laser teeth whitening is a cosmetic dental procedure a licensed professional should perform at a dental clinic. It uses a much higher bleaching agent concentration than at-home teeth whitening products, which can cause minor and short-lived side effects.
Laser teeth whitening is faster but not necessarily better than other teeth whitening methods. If you’re in a hurry or wish to avoid the hassle of handling whitening at home, in-office laser whitening may be worth the extra cost.
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