A beautiful, bright smile can give you the boost of confidence you need to look and feel your very best. If you have a major event coming up like a wedding, job interview, family reunion, or some other celebratory occasion, you could be planning to whiten your teeth in preparation. After all, you know there will be many photos taken and don’t want to waste time or energy worrying about imperfections. Many people wonder, however, how long the effects of whitening can last and how far in advance to get started for the best results. If this sounds like you, keep reading to learn more so that you can develop an appropriate timeline before your big day!
What Are the Options for Whitening Teeth?
There are many products that claim to whiten teeth, so how do you decide which one to use? To make an informed decision, you need to understand the options. Some common methods include:
- Over-the-counter. There are a multitude of commercially available strips and other products that remove surface stains.
- In-office at the dentist. Many dentists provide professional services onsite to remove years’ worth of discoloration in a matter of minutes to hours.
- Professional materials at home. Many dental offices provide patients with take-home kits that include professional-grade materials and trays that are customized to your teeth.
Each method has its own advantages and drawbacks so your unique needs, goals, and circumstances can help you decide which works best for you.
What is the Timeline for Treatment?
The length of time it takes to see results and how long they last varies for each whitening technique. For example, over-the-counter lightening strips need to be worn 1 to 4 weeks before you see results, versus 1 to 2 weeks with professional materials supplied by your dentist. The fastest results come from in-office sessions which often only take an hour to brighten teeth several shades. This option is also the most costly, however.
How Long Do Results Last?
The most effective method is provided by your dentist in-office and the effects can last up to 3 years. If you have the resources, this is a fantastic option! Otherwise, the results you’ll get from take-home kits can be expected to last anywhere from 6 to 12 months. That makes this a great choice if your event is still several months off but you don’t have the resources to dedicate to a more costly selection. Products you can purchase from a store last about as long, but contain ingredients that are more prone to damaging your teeth so it’s important not to over-treat them.
Now that you know how long it takes to get the shiny, bright smile you’ve been dreaming of, you can plan accordingly for your occasion. Then you’ll be flashing a beautiful smile that will be remembered for years to come!
About the Practice
At Sommers Family Dentistry, patients of all ages will feel welcomed and cared for by our dedicated staff. Our dentists and hygienists prioritize preventative care that gives you a healthy, happy smile that lasts. We provide at-home whitening kits that are stronger than what’s available over the counter so you get professional results that can last for years. If you’d like to make an appointment, you are welcome to request one on the website or by calling (419) 668-3606.