What's the Difference Between Over-the-Counter and Professional Teeth Whitening?

What's the Difference Between Over-the-Counter and Professional Teeth Whitening?

While it’s generally accepted that there’s a connection between oral health and overall health, can a healthy, bright smile actually make you more confident and successful? Perhaps.

In fact, a study by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry reported that 99.7% of adults believe that a smile is an important social asset. Conversely, an overwhelming 74% of people think an unattractive smile can be a barrier to career success.

It’s no wonder, then, that cosmetic dentistry services have become increasingly popular over the years, with teeth whitening consistently leading the way. So you’ve decided that you want a brighter, whiter smile. Now what?

Take a moment as Dr. Meriem Boukadoum here at 54th Street Dental drills down on teeth whitening so you can make an informed decision on the service that’s best for you.

Professional teeth whitening vs. OTC products

When it comes to teeth whitening, choosing from among the many options comes down to desired outcomes and the current condition of your teeth, as well as whether you want to do the whitening process yourself or go to your dental provider.

Generally, the biggest differences between a do-it-yourself approach using over-the-counter (OTC) whitening products from a retail store and professional teeth whitening services from your dentist are twofold: the potency of the whitening solutions, and how long it takes to get to your desired outcome.

Convenient dentist-directed treatments

Here at 54th Street Dental, our teeth whitening options offer patients the best of both worlds — an in-office, chairside professional teeth whitening service that uses the Philips Zoom! whitening system. Zoom! is one of the most recognized brands in the teeth whitening industry, both in professional settings as well as customized take-home whitening trays.

During a consultation, we do a thorough exam, review your medical history, and find out more about your whitening goals. Using this information, we create a treatment plan that meets your individual needs and provides the optimal desired outcome.

If take-home trays are your best option, you still don’t have to go it completely alone. We determine the best whitening kit for your situation, and provide you with clear instructions on how long to wear your trays each day. 

Although it varies, most patients notice results in about two weeks, with little or no sensitivity. 

More consistent outcomes without the guesswork

What’s great about our menu of whitening treatments is that regardless of whether you’re a DIY person and you want at-home whitening trays, or you want to sit back and let your dental provider do all the work, you get more consistent outcomes without any of the guesswork. 

That’s right, you can throw those confusing instructions from that OTC whitening product to the curb. Yes, please!

In-office for quicker and long-lasting results  

Reliable, consistent results are great, but if you’re whitening your teeth for a job interview or special occasion like a wedding or reunion where time is of the essence, professional in-office teeth whitening may be your best bet. Typically with Philips Zoom!, we can whiten your teeth up to eight shades in less than an hour.*

What’s even better is that they stay that way for 4-6 months.* Simply be vigilant with your at-home oral care like brushing and flossing, as well as visiting us every six months for your professional cleaning and checkup.  

If your dull teeth are putting a cramp in your self-esteem and self-confidence, contact 54th Street Dental for a whitening consultation. To reach us, use the online booking tool or call our office in the Midtown West neighborhood of New York City at 212-333-3200.

* Individual results may vary.

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