The products contain bleaching agents at lower concentration compared to the products used by dentists. The most common bleaching agent in these products is carbamide peroxide, which is a 10% solution has a whitening capacity equal to a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution. The products used by dentists contain hydrogen peroxide in concentrations ranging from 15 to 43%. The dentist modulates concentration based on the specific needs of each patient. Some of them may require the fluoride varnish process.
The thermo-formed masks inserted in the do-it-yourself kits, unlike those used by the dentist, have standard dimensions and only in rare cases can be shaped to make them adhere perfectly to the dental arches. This customization allows maximum contact between the teeth whitening gel and minimizes the contact of the gel with the gum tissue, reducing the onset of inflammation.
Additional protective measures
If the dentist detects hyper-sensitivity of the patient to the whitening substances, he can apply special rubber barriers, called dams, suitable to avoid the contact of the gel with the gums and the other soft tissues of the oral cavity. Obviously, these measures are not included in the kits.
Speed of the whitening process
As already mentioned previously, do-it-yourself products require one or more daily applications, with treatment times ranging from a few weeks to a month. If you are being treated by the dentist, the time to obtain a certain result is reduced to 30/60 minutes. The dentist does not simply apply bleaching agents but increases their effectiveness by using lamps with light at a predetermined frequency. In the most technologically equipped studios, like ours, laser sources are used suitable for maximizing the lightening effect, further reducing treatment times. In almost ninety percent of the cases, one session is enough to get the maximum result. Therefore, few patients have to return to complete the treatment.
Some good advice for those who have decided to do it by themselves
First of all, choose certified and guaranteed products. Check that the CE mark is on the product packaging. These two premises seem trivial, but they are far from obvious. If you have opted for a gel whitening kit, make sure that the mask supplied in the kit is changeable and well adaptable. If not, change the product.
As already mentioned, the two most common side effects are a temporary increase in the sensitivity of the teeth to hot or cold and slight irritation of the soft tissues of the mouth, particularly the gums. Hyper-sensitivity often occurs during the early stages of the bleaching treatment, and then disappears or shrinks. Soft tissue gum irritation may be caused by improper use of the mask or intolerance allergy to the bleaching agents contained in the gel. Both conditions, mild and usually reversible they disappear within 3 days of suspension or end of treatment.
However, if these phenomena take on an abnormal size or a prolonged change in the color of the gums occurs, stop the treatment immediately and consult your dentist. During treatment, it is advisable to optimize the remineralization of the teeth. There are commercially available pastes or gels that can be applied using the same mask. An application of 4/5 minutes both before and after the whitening treatment is generally sufficient. During the whitening cycle, wash your teeth with toothpaste for teeth sensitive.