Comparison of Whitening Methods
November 2006
Canadian College
of Dental Health                                                            Student Dental Hygienist: Boban Fidanoski



In Office Whitening Methods

At Home Professionally Custom made Tray Method

Over the Counter Methods of Whitening - OTC


¨        Dental Hygienist isolates and protects lips, gums and inside lining of the mouth.

¨        Whitening agent is applied to the teeth

¨        Powerful light source is applied for activation of the whitening agent

¨        Dental Hygienist makes polyvinyl mouthpiece tray which snugly fits client’s mouth

¨        Each night (or during the day) for a period of  2-3 weeks Client places whitening agent on the trays and places trays in the mouth

Whitening products bought over the counter at various stores by Client.

¨        OTC kit with standard fit (not custom made) mouth tray

¨        Whitening adhesive strips (no tray method)
Crest Whitestrips ®

¨        Paint-on-teeth method
Colgate Simply White Night ® and
Crest Night Effects ®

¨        Whitening teeth dentifrices

Argon or Carbon Dioxide
Laser Whitening

Incandescent  or
Resin Curing  Light
Power Whitening



¨        Produces great and instant effects in only one appointment (shortest treatment time than any other method)

¨        Produces less heat in comparison with power whitening method

¨        Completely professionally supervised

¨        Produces great results for a shorter period of time in comparing with at home method

¨        Completely professionally supervised

¨        Produces Good results

¨        Most Cost effective method

¨        Partially supervised by Dental Hygienist

¨        Inexpensive


¨        Expensive

¨        Greater relapse of colour upon the termination of the treatment

¨        Relatively expensive

¨        Produces heat that can cause sensitivity

¨        Greater relapse of colour upon the termination of the treatment

¨        Time consuming in comparison with in office methods

¨        Can cause sensitivity due to partial lack of supervision

¨        Very poor results

¨        Completely professionally unsupervised

¨        Can cause sensitivity due to improper handling or standardization of the trays

¨        Most products do not list the percentage of  Peroxide compounds


750-2000 $

600-1200 $

300-500 $

40-300 $


All the methods have the same long lasting whitening effect on teeth.


One in office appointment for 1-2 hours

1-3 in office appointments for 1-2 hours

3-4 in office appointments with daily or nightly at home sessions for 2-3 weeks

No in office appointments

2-3 weeks of daily or nightly sessions

Chemical Composition

35 % Hydrogen Peroxide

35 % of Hydrogen Peroxide

10 % of Carbamide peroxide is the most recommended

At home products can also be found as :

-             3%, 7,5% and 9.5% of Hydrogen peroxide for day use

-             16% and 22% of Carbamide Peroxide for night use

                  In general they are Low concentration
peroxide based products. Most products
do not list the percentage of  Peroxide compounds



Please note that for the best results it is recommended to combine in office and at home whitening methods.

author: Boban Fidanoski

© November,2006 Copyright - Text, diagrams, figures and photographs
by B.Fidanoski- Port Credit, ON - Canada