The Process of Teeth Whitening

Huffman Family Dentistry

Many people hate the color of their teeth. Whether you are a tea, coffee, or soda drinker or a smoker, many habits can stain your teeth. Many of these habits can cause your teeth to turn off-white or even yellow in colors. Foods with dark pigmentations and a lot of fruit can even eat away at your enamel and cause stains on your teeth. For other people, it’s just a lifetime of using your teeth that can cause them to go yellow or off-white.

So, you know you hate the color of your teeth, but what options do you have?

Teeth whitening is a common process that many people choose in order to help them restore their teeth to their natural color while also boosting their confidence. There are two main types of dental whitenings: at home and professional.

In this post, we will look at both and determine what might work best for you.

At-Home Teeth Whitening:

Many people opt for the cheaper option to do their teeth whitenings at home. The average teeth-whitening kit at home can be made by any company from Crest to Colgate, or any company in between. The average kit will run at various prices depending on what you want to pay, but the average range of $20-30 for teeth whitening strips up to $150+ for advanced at-home whitening systems that include LED treatments or other means of whitening your teeth.

These at-home options are cheaper and more affordable. However, many people believe that they are not as effective as professional whitening treatments. You have to also be disciplined to keep up with the treatments or the results will be short-lasting! Refilling the strips or constantly supplying your LED system with supplies can also be quite costly, which adds up over time rather than being a cost all at once.

Most treatments will require you to wear whitening trays for 20 minutes to several hours a few times per week. Doing so on a consistent basis can help you get whiter teeth, but it has to be done consistently or it likely won’t have the long-term effects you wished to get.

Professional Whitenings:

These are typically the most effective whitening treatments as they are done by a professional. These treatments can cost $400 to $650 (or even more). The most top-of-the-line procedures can run upwards of $1500 for a single whitening treatment. Most of these are considered “cosmetic” and therefore are not covered by a large majority of insurance companies.

During these more expensive treatments, the dentist will typically use lasers to remove stains and whiten your teeth. Treatments can take anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 hours or more depending on how much whitening you need and the type of treatment you chose. Most people need more than one dentist’s visit to make the treatment complete. So, consider your time included in the “price” you pay for professional dental whitening treatments as well. It’s not as simple and straight-forward as it sometimes might seem.


No matter which teeth-whitening option you chose, be prepared to pay the price for the treatment kit or dental work, and also the time that it takes to get it done. If you don’t keep up with the treatment, you will find yourself with the same stained smile sometime in the future. 

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