Teeth Whitening - In-Office Vs. At-Home

Trusted Health Products
Written By Gallegos Family Dentistry / Reviewed By Ray Spotts

Tooth whitening is one of the most prominent creations of cosmetic dentistry. As a result, tremendous numbers of hopeful patients are in the pursuit of the whitening effect. Around 38.29 million Americans from 2011 to 2019 use whitening products/procedures, according to a Statista survey. More significant growth is expected by 2023, with goals of highlighting solutions that comprise tooth whitening, providing answers to frequently asked questions about teeth bleaching, and presenting the facts about all treatment methods. 

Tooth Whitening Methods 

Hydrogen peroxide is a common active ingredient in all three of the main methods of tooth whitening. 

The key differences between each approach are:

  1. In-office tooth whitening. In-office bleaching is the fastest and the most effective strategy. There’s direct teasing of teeth with a whitener under specified conditions of lighting, heating, and lasering. On average, the time of the whole process lasts between an hour and an hour and a half. The hydrogen peroxide content for in-office whitening exceeds the rest by up to 43 percent.
  2. At-home tooth whitening. At-home cleaning could be either completely self-administered or supervised by your family dentist. Compared to in-office tooth whitening, this approach builds up whitening efficacy overtime. Therefore, it takes longer for the actual tooth bleaching effect to become visible. Results usually manifest anywhere after one hour to 24 hours. The procedure needs to be repeated every day until the fourth week. In this instance, hydrogen peroxide concentration of the whitening product is minimal - about three percent.
  3. Over-The-Counter (OTC) tooth whitening. OTC bleaching systems are the least expensive option. The costs range from $20 to $150. Just like at-home remedies, daily reworking is needed. With six percent hydrogen peroxide focus, this is relatively safe for acid-sensitive people who also have experience using OTC whiteners.     

In-Office Teeth Whitening Treatment 

Dentists pre-test the patient before performing the tooth whitening process, which is directed at ensuring the best possible outcome without pain or damage. Here’s a brief guide to how it works:

  • Step 1: Place a barrier in the mouth to keep the gum, lips, and tongue from coming in contact with the teeth whitening solution.
  • Step 2: Wash out food particles, plaque, and bacteria before the whitening process begins. The disinfecting stage is important for better post-procedural management. 
  • Step 3: Pay attention to teeth sensitivity.


So, how much does in-office teeth whitening cost? The answer depends on your location and the dentist. Professional teeth whitening provides personalized teeth whitening plans. In-office bleaching procedures range in cost from $200 to $500 per arch or $500 to $1,000 for the whole mouth.


The greater part of its advantage is the promise to yield better results. Advantages include:

  • The safest form of whitening 
  • The quickest dental treatment
  • Tooth coloring evenness

At-Home Teeth Whitening Solution

At-home teeth whitening is safer than the OTC approach yet not as expensive as office-bound tooth cleaning. As mentioned above, two variants are possible. The better one, of course, is dentist-supervised, at-home tooth whitening. 

At-Home Teeth Whitening Kit

At-home, dentist-supervised tooth whitening consists of passive guidance by a dental expert plus distribution of the whitening substance. Here’s what comes with it:

  • Whitening gel or toothpaste. It contains peroxide, which removes surface stains from teeth, providing visible results.
  • Home trays or strips. They fix discoloration and take a long time to get results, but are potent and safe.
  • Light devices. With effective LED lights, you can activate and lift stains to get six shades whiter teeth in the comfort of your home. 


Again, it depends on where you live. The estimated spend on dentist-supervised bleaching is around $150 to $300 for a line of upper or lower teeth. If you want a full mouth makeover, the cost is approximately $300 to $600.


Many factors make using stay-home whitening remedies a great choice. Consider once more the following advantages:

  • Cheaper than the in-office type
  • Efficient as other whitening remedies 
  • Less chemical substituents, less side effect

Points Of Concern 

Scientific research on the overall impact of tooth whitening can’t be overlooked.  

  1. General tooth damage with OTC whiteners. According to research, the adverse effects of tooth whiteners discovered the presence of sodium chlorite. As a consequence, the impact of this substance was tested. What’s the result? Sodium chlorite decreases tooth hardness and increases the possibility of tooth abrasions.
  2. From another study, four researchers found that certain tooth bleaching products have a high diffusion effect, a property that negatively impacts cytotoxicity. If you have extended tooth sensitivity during whitening, this is perhaps one of the reasons why.

How White Can Whiteners Make My Teeth? 

Just how white can teeth whiteners can make your teeth depends on a range of factors:

  1. The method used: bleaching or non-bleaching
  2. How potent the active ingredient of the product is
  3. Tooth affinity to being bleached
  4. Original tooth color before whitening  

All in all, the right whiteners offer a shiny yet natural sparkle and brightness to your teeth as well as a lightening enhancement for people who have problems with tooth discoloration, surface stains, rapid teeth aging, or poor oral health.

Looking for a 100% all-natural liquid tooth oil and mouth rinse? Check out OraMD Original Strength and OraMD Extra Strength. Subscribe to our Trusted Health Club newsletter for more information about natural living tips, natural health, oral health and skincare. If you are looking for more health resources make sure to check out the Trusted Health Resources list. 

Written By:
Gallegos Family Dentistry is a dental practice in Albuquerque, New Mexico. They provide a wide range of dental services and professional dental emergency for those in need of dental care.

Reviewed By:

Founder Ray Spotts has a passion for all things natural and has made a life study of nature as it relates to health and well-being. Ray became a forerunner bringing products to market that are extraordinarily effective and free from potentially harmful chemicals and additives. For this reason Ray formed Trusted Health Products, a company you can trust for clean, effective, and healthy products. Ray is an organic gardener, likes fishing, hiking, and teaching and mentoring people to start new businesses. You can get his book for free, “How To Succeed In Business Based On God’s Word,” at www.rayspotts.com. 

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

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