The Science of Teeth Whitening

You could have a perfectly symmetrical set of teeth and a beautifully warm smile, but if your teeth are stained, this discoloration can have a big impact on your smile's appearance. Thankfully, lifting stains to brighten and whiten a smile can easily be achieved with professional teeth whitening treatments. Professional teeth whitening can be done in our dental office or the comfort of your own home, and it's a quick and simple way to enhance your appearance and improve your confidence. 

How Does Teeth Whitening Work?

There are different methods of teeth whitening, and they all work slightly differently. 

Professional Teeth Whitening

Professional teeth whitening treatments (both in-office treatments and at-home kits) usually include custom-designed trays and professional-strength whitening agents. The whitening agents (usually gel or foam) contain either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide that bleach the teeth by breaking up and lifting stains on the tooth enamel. 

Over-the-Counter Teeth Whitening

Over-the-counter teeth whitening products such as toothpaste, strips, or mouthwash usually either use mild bleaching or light abrasives such as baking soda to break up and lift stains on the surfaces of the teeth. 

How to Whiten Your Teeth: Why Choose Professional Teeth Whitening?

Professional teeth whitening treatments offer several benefits over at-home, over-the-counter teeth whitening. 

Powerful Results in Less Time

Whether administered in our office or the comfort of your home, professional teeth whitening treatments are more powerful than over-the-counter products. So, you can expect to achieve significant results with fewer treatments and in much less time. 

Precise Treatment Expectations and Results

Our dentist can work with you to identify the current shade of your teeth and select a targeted level of whitening to ensure you achieve the results you desire. 

Cost Control

Working with our dentist, we can help you estimate the total cost of teeth whitening treatments based on your current tooth color, your desired level of whitening, and the approximate number of treatments that will be needed to achieve your desired results. 

Safer and Fewer Side Effects

Professional whitenings performed in the office are much safer than over-the-counter treatments, which are not always safe - especially if they have not been approved by the American Dental Association. Although professional treatments are stronger, they are performed in the office under the supervision of our dental care team. 

Additionally, we can adjust treatments to help mitigate side effects such as sore gums or tooth sensitivity. Plus, we can provide patients with sensitivity treatments to alleviate any potential side effects. 

Best for Dental Prosthetics

If you have dental crowns, dental bonding, dental veneers, or other dental prosthetics, then at-home teeth whitening will not work to whiten the dental work in your mouth. This can lead to uneven or ineffective results. 

With professional whitening treatments, our dentist can work with you to ensure your natural tooth enamel and dental prosthetics achieve a uniform and attractive tone. 

Teeth Whitening Alternatives

Teeth can have two different types of discoloration, intrinsic and extrinsic, and intrinsic discoloration cannot be improved with teeth whitening treatments. Our dentist, however, can provide you with alternatives (such as dental bonding, veneers, or dental crowns) to mask stains while brightening and whitening the appearance of permanently discolored teeth. 

What Are the Benefits of a Whiter Smile?

Having a whiter, brighter smile has many benefits. A more attractive smile can improve your sense of self-confidence as well as the first impressions you make. Teeth whitening can also take years from your appearance. It might even be considered an investment if you have a public-facing profession such as modeling, acting, news anchoring, or working in sales. 

How Much Does Teeth Whitening Cost? 

The cost of teeth whitening varies depending on whether you are receiving in-office treatments or purchasing a professional-grade take-home teeth whitening regimen. The cost can also vary based on the number or frequency of treatments you need to achieve and maintain your desired results. 

On average, professional teeth-whitening treatments can range from about $400 to $600 per professional in-office session and $200 to $300 for a professional at-home whitening kit. 

While dental insurance policies vary, most consider teeth whitening treatments to be purely cosmetic. As a result, teeth whitening is not often covered by dental insurance. Our office team can take a look at your policy to help you determine if it will help cover the cost of whitening your teeth. 

Smile Brightly With Professional Teeth Whitening in Fairhope, AL

At Lagniappe Dental, we believe every smile is beautiful, and we love helping our patients see the beauty in their unique features, too! Tooth discoloration is a normal, natural, and common concern of every patient. We are here to help you select and achieve a shade that will look naturally bright and attractive while keeping your teeth and gums safe and healthy. 

If you would like to learn more about improving the look of your smile with professional teeth whitening treatments, we welcome you to contact our dental office in Fairhope to request a consultation with our dentist, Dr. David Bruce.


Call 251-517-3313 or request an appointment online to set up your first visit. We’ll be in touch soon.