May 5, 2022
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Safe teeth whitening in the clinic: types of procedures and their features

Safe teeth whitening in the clinic: types of procedures and their featuressafe teeth whitening in the clinicsafe teeth whiteningteeth whitening in the clinicteeth whitening

White teeth are one of the attributes of attractiveness and grooming. Light enamel is subconsciously perceived as healthier, although in fact the natural color of the teeth may be different. In pursuit of a beautiful smile, people often use “folk” whitening recipes based on baking soda, activated carbon and other substances with a large abrasive. Rough mechanical action thins the enamel and makes it brittle, so it is better to consult a dentist. He will select the most effective and safe whitening option.

Professional teeth whitening

Whitening at the dentist is a method of whitening tooth enamel due to the mechanical removal of dental deposits and chemical exposure. The method is chosen by the doctor, taking into account the age of the patient, the condition of his tooth enamel and the desired result of the procedure. Sometimes several bleaching methods are combined. The effect of the procedure is to lighten the enamel by several tones.

Types of whitening

Conventionally, the procedure can be divided into 2 main types – mechanical and chemical bleaching.


Even naturally light tooth enamel turns yellow over time due to hard deposits. They are formed from soft plaque, including food particles and a bacterial layer. If dental care is not thorough enough, soft plaque hardens and turns into yellowish or brownish tartar. You won’t be able to remove it yourself – you need professional cleaning.

There are 3 types of mechanical cleaning.

  • Manual. The classic way to remove dental plaque with special instruments – curettes. Usually the technique is used in combination with others or to remove local deep subgingival stones.
  • Ultrasonic. Under the influence of a stream of water with ultrasonic waves, dental deposits soften and are easily separated from the tooth with a hook.
  • Airflow. It is carried out on an apparatus that supplies a pressure of water with the smallest abrasive particles.

Mechanical cleaning is a mandatory step before chemical cleaning. By itself, it brightens the enamel by 1-2 tones by restoring the natural color. Whitening is done only on clean teeth without plaque, otherwise its effectiveness is greatly reduced.


For whitening, a gel based on hydrogen peroxide is used. To speed up the process, the treatment area is exposed to ultraviolet light. Thus, it is possible to obtain clarification up to 8 tones. If the result was insufficient, the treatment is repeated after a week or more.

Stages of work:

  1. the mouth is fixed in the open state with a mouth expander;
  2. a protective agent is distributed on the gums;
  3. a whitening gel is applied to the entire surface of the teeth;
  4. treat the area with an ultraviolet lamp for several minutes;
  5. if necessary, re-apply the gel and illuminate.

You can whiten all teeth or just the smile line – the latter option will cost less.


Laser whitening is performed using the same technology as the photo. The only difference is that the laser heats the enamel less, and this reduces the risk of thermal gum burns. The technique is considered more modern and is used in leading clinics of the country. During laser treatment, the gel releases active oxygen, which gives the effect of clarification.

Whitening with trays

When lightening with caps, only a composition based on hydrogen peroxide is used. The teeth are not exposed to ultraviolet or laser, so the exposure time is increased to several hours. The mouth guard serves as a reservoir that is filled with gel and inserted into the mouth. Usually the procedure is carried out at home, but a doctor’s consultation is required.

Mouthguards are standard and individual. The first is cheaper, but it may not fit snugly against the teeth – this is fraught with burns of the mucous membrane and low efficiency of the procedure. An individual tray is ordered from the dentist, it is made according to the impressions of the patient’s teeth. Using this technique, you can lighten the enamel by 3-5 tones. To do this, you will have to wear a mouthguard for several days in a row for 2-6 hours.


Intracanal clarification is used only for depulped teeth. It may be needed when the shade of enamel on one tooth is very different – for example, it has darkened due to pulpitis. The procedure is quite complicated and is carried out under local anesthesia: the tooth is opened, a whitening gel is injected inside (its composition differs from the means for other types of lightening) and the cavity is closed with a temporary filling. As a rule, clarification is carried out simultaneously with tooth treatment. A few days later, a permanent filling is fixed.

Which whitening method is best

The safest bleaching method shown to all patients once every 6-12 months is professional cleaning. It allows you to return the enamel to its natural color and get rid of plaque. Other types of clarification are chemical, therefore, they affect the sensitivity and condition of the enamel. Manufacturers add fluoride and other additives to the gels that reduce sensitivity, but the procedure is still not suitable for every person. That is why only a doctor should choose a method of clarification.

At the initial consultation, the dentist evaluates the condition of the enamel, listens to the wishes of the patient and selects the type of whitening taking this into account. Laser and photobleaching methods are considered the most effective – they give almost instant results. Lightening with caps is slightly less effective and takes more time, but does not increase the sensitivity of the enamel as much. Intracanal or endo whitening is used to lighten the enamel of 1-2 teeth, and not the entire smile line.

Dental care after safe whitening

To maintain the health of your teeth and their impeccable appearance, it is important to follow a “white” diet for 2-3 weeks. This is especially important to do in the early days when the enamel is too susceptible to dyes.


  • black coffee;
  • black tea;
  • hibiscus;
  • chocolate;
  • soda;
  • red wine;
  • juices;
  • coloring vegetables, fruits and berries: citrus fruits, currants, cherries, beets;
  • bright ketchups and sauces;
  • coloring spices: paprika, turmeric.

You should also brush your teeth regularly with a soft toothbrush and non-abrasive toothpaste. For best results, use dental floss, mouthwash, or an irrigator. The dentist who did the bleaching always gives individual recommendations for each patient.


Whitening is a procedure for lightening tooth enamel by removing plaque and exposure to special gels. Additionally, an ultraviolet lamp or laser is used to enhance the effect. The whitening technique is selected by the doctor individually, based on the needs of the patient and the condition of the enamel.

Author: stomatologist Skalet Yana Alexandrovna

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