Picture this scenario :  Your teeth are looking rather creamy…no wait, they’re kinda yellow because of your daily caffeine intake.  You’ve tried a few whitening toothpastes but they’re not doing anything.  And you’ve got away with it for so many years because you’ve learned to smile without teeth…but you’re getting married next month.  You want to look your best!  And that means a white smile to match your white dress.  That’s it!  You’re going to whiten your teeth but you’re on a tight budget with all the wedding expenses…  Should you go pro and pay that little bit more or pay less and DIY and hope for the best…?

diy teeth whitening kit, professional teeth whitening

I’m your Tooth Fairy and I’m here to help!

Professional Teeth Whitening

This is when you go to a dentist and have a proper consultation to address your needs and ask the questions which Google cannot answer.  You should also get an examination to see whether you are a suitable candidate for teeth whitening.  And you should also be advised of anything else you require, e.g. fillings, scaling, etc.

If you are a suitable candidate for teeth whitening, your dentist may offer you :-

1.  At dental surgery, Laser whitening
2.  At home whitening
3.  Laser + at home whitening.

Not all dentists have laser teeth whitening equipment.  What do I think about laser?  (That’s another post!)  For this post, I am focussed on at home whitening kits – this means that your dentist will take an impression of your teeth to make a mould to form trays which are personalised to your teeth only.

1.  Professional advice and aftercare
2.  Dental health will be fully assessed
3.  Personalised form fitting trays

1.  Expensive

DIY Teeth Whitening

This is when you spend time Googling DIY teeth whitening websites and browsing forums and testimonials on which website to purchase from.  You won’t necessarily choose the cheapest on offer…but you’ll choose a reasonably priced DIY teeth whitening kit.  You will also have assessed your own teeth and decided that you’re a dentist  your teeth are fine and suitable for whitening.

1.  Cheap cheap

1.  You’ll get an instructional DVD or leaflet telling you how to DIY.  You will need to make your own teeth whitening trays.  Yes, not only will you become a dentist but you will also be a dental lab technician too!  YAY!  (Sarcasm intended!)

2.  If anything goes wrong, the people at the website cannot help you.  In fact, they’ll most likely end up telling you to “Seek professional advice.  Go see a dentist!

3.  It’s against the rules of the GDC (General Dental Council)

The GDC regards tooth whitening as the practice of dentistry and has signalled that it will seek to prosecute those who are not registered and who provide tooth whitening. It has also stated that it is currently of the view that bleaching should only be carried out by dentists.

The Bottom Line

Dentists go through years of studying for a reason.  Teeth are precious.  I know I don’t want to lose mine!  Sure, some people have “winged” it and think that they have had no problems with DIY teeth whitening…but is that because you haven’t had your regular dental examination yet?

My advice : Leave the teeth whitening to the professionals!

Have you had your teeth whitened?  How was your experience?  Feel free to share.  I won’t judge you!

Disclaimer :
The information on this blog post is intended to be funny, yet educational.  It is a general overview of a variety of topics associated with dental health.  This does not in any way imply a doctor-patient relationship.  The content is not intended to take the place of an examination or consultation with your dentist or other healthcare professionals.  No action or inaction should be taken based solely on the contents you read here.  If in doubt, seek your own dentist for professional advice.

Professional kit is my own paid version and was made by a dental lab technician.  DIY kit was provided by Mint Cosmetics UK for consideration.  No endorsement of any products featured here.

12 Comments on Teeth Whitening : Pro vs DIY

  1. Tegan
    02/12/2011 at 9:53 am (6 years ago)

    I used an at home whitening kit from a super market once and it made my teeth feel so sensitive that i had to take it off!! EEEP!

    • Ling
      05/12/2011 at 12:57 pm (6 years ago)

      @Tegan, Yikes!! Sounds rather nasty!

  2. lilpil
    03/12/2011 at 12:20 am (6 years ago)

    I’m a DIYer and my dentist think my teeth are great. I say if you want to go down the path of DIY, start on a lower strength whitening product so you know you can tolerate the bleaching and then work your way up to higher strength products. Of course, if you are short for time, then I guess pro is the way to go.

    I’m keen to hear your thoughts on laser cos I want to do Zoom.

    Love your toothy posts 🙂

    • Ling
      05/12/2011 at 12:58 pm (6 years ago)

      @lilpil, Zoom zoom…yeah, laser whitening…another story…

  3. Megan
    03/12/2011 at 1:12 am (6 years ago)

    Ling what is “Zoom” teeth whitening? Heaps of people at my work get it done and it seems to last for years, at least I think it’s called Zoom. Is that the laser thing?

    • Ling
      05/12/2011 at 12:58 pm (6 years ago)

      @Megan, Yup, Zoom is laser whitening…I will get on it 😀

  4. Rin
    03/12/2011 at 1:34 am (6 years ago)

    I really need to visit my dentist and orthodontist. I want to get my teeth whitened, they are in desperate need of it :-/ Thanks for the post 🙂

    • Ling
      05/12/2011 at 12:58 pm (6 years ago)

      @Rin, *mwah* You’re welcome 😀

    • Ling
      05/12/2011 at 12:59 pm (6 years ago)

      @Elisa, I haven’t seen Crest strips before…and yes…good tagging! 😀

  5. Jen
    11/12/2011 at 7:24 am (6 years ago)

    Whats your view on teeth whitening strips like the crest or white glo ones? I’m not a big fan of the teeth trays I always found my teeth would get whiter at the bottom of the tooth but not the top.

    I also just read that 10 products for teeth whitening were removed from the market today or something. I think one of the brands was white smile or something. 3 or 4 brands in total!


    • Ling
      12/12/2011 at 12:20 pm (6 years ago)

      @Jen, I’ve not used teeth whitening strips before…but some people love it!