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DO TEETH WHITENING LIGHTS WORK?
One of the more popular trends in the at-home teeth whitening market is the use of small mouthpieces with bright blue lights.  You may have seen one or more famous people promoting this type of device in your Instagram feed. The question is: do they actually work?
Dr. Lara Coseo


teeth whitening led light

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WILL A TEETH WHITENING KIT AND LIGHT PRODUCE RESULTS?

Most likely, yes. The kits we have seen use a high strength carbamide peroxide or hydrogen peroxide whitening gel, and they instruct the user to “wear” the gel under the light for about thirty minutes each day for maximum results. Applying that high strength gel to the teeth will cause a visible whitening result. Carbamide peroxide gels can penetrate tooth enamel to break down darkly colored pigments inside the tooth, thus lightening the overall color of the teeth. This will happen regardless of whether or not you also use a light on the teeth. Which invites the following question . . .

DOES THE WHITENING LIGHT MAKE A DIFFERENCE?

The jury is still out on this one. Current research contains many conflicting studies about the effectiveness of using lights on bleaching gel to improve the speed of the magnitude of the results. Some, like this one from 2011, show that activation with an LED light yields significant color change. This study states that light activation does produce a faster and more intense bleaching effect. On the other hand, multiple studies claim that there is no increased whitening effect through the use of lights, whether they are lasers, halogen lamps, or LEDs. “The use of light activation did not show any advantages compared to chemical bleaching.” Researchers here noted that the more important aspect of the whitening process is the length of time the gel stays in contact with the teeth. This study showed a higher level of tooth sensitivity when using an LED light.

WHAT DO DENTISTS RECOMMEND?

In general, based on the current research, we do not know if lights make a difference in the speed or effectiveness of whitening. We do know that adding heat to any peroxide whitening gel makes it work faster. This means that a heat-generating light will speed up the whitening process. Because LEDs do not produce much heat, if they work at all, it is not through this mechanism. Any high strength peroxide gel will produce whitening results with or without light activation. It is more important to keep the gel in contact with the teeth for the recommended period of time than to add the light.

HOW MUCH DO TEETH WHITENING KITS COST?

Teeth whitening kits that use accelerator lights can be a cheap but effective way to brighten your teeth. A kit that includes a powerful 35% peroxide bleaching gel will cost between $20 to $50 which is significantly cheaper than professional treatments.


EDITOR PICKS

We have picked out some whitening kits that combine effective whitening ingredients and accelelator lights. These will kits will give noticeable results.


01_
DR. SONG TEETH WHITENING KIT
over the counter whitening kits

The Dr. Song Teeth Whitening kit uses a 35% dental-grade carbamide peroxide whitening gel that is supplied in 3 x 3mL syringes. The kit comes complete with two whitening trays and an LED accelerator light (batteries included). The trays are designed so the light slots securely into the face of the mouthpiece.

Key specs
Peroxide:
Yes
Strength:
35% carbamide peroxide
Accelerator light included: Yes
Light spectrum:
Blue spectrum LED


02_
AURAGLOW DELUXE TEETH WHITENING KIT

The Auraglow deluxe home whitening kit comes with 2 pre-loaded syringes containing 10mL of carbamide peroxide. The mouth trays can be molded to suit the individual’s teeth and allow a more accurate fit. The 5 diode light is designed to clip easily to the mouthpiece and accelerate the teeth bleaching process.

Key specs
Peroxide:
Yes
Strength:
35% carbamide peroxide
Accelerator light included: Yes
Light spectrum:
Blue spectrum LED


ALTERNATIVES TO TEETH WHITENING KITS

Teeth whitening has become the most popular dental treatment of choice. There is a great variety of products and methods available to consumers but their effectiveness and safety can vary and some choices, can be questionable at best. Find out which products and whitening method really work.  We have picked out 3 good alternatives to over-the-counter whitening kits below.

dentist bleaching teeth

In-office whitening

This procedure is done in the dentist’s office and uses the highest possible concentrations of peroxide. This method is a good choice for people who want a convenient solution that delivers immediate results.

Professional at-home

With this option, the dentist prescribes and dispenses the treatment for the patient to perform in their own time at home. Most dentists agree that this is often the best option in terms of final results.

kendal jenner whitening pen image 3

Whitening pens

Although this method will not give as good results as in-office, professional at-home or OTC whitening kits, it is by far the easiest and mess-free option. Despite their limitations, whitening pens can still deliver pleasing results.

FAQ

Learn more…
Teeth whitening,, Whitening pens, and Whitening kits
In today’s society, beautiful white teeth have become one of the most desirable physical qualities you can have. And as a result, more and more people are searching for ways to achieve the perfect Hollywood smile.
REFERENCES…

1| Blue light’s effect on gum inflammation. J. Max Goodson Associate clinical professor of periodontal medicine Forsyth Institute.

2| Tooth bleaching using peroxide-containing agents: current status of safety issues Department of Restorative Dentistry, Loma Linda University School of Dentistry, California, USA.


Dr. Lara Coseo

Dr. Lara Coseo, (DDS, FAGD) is a 2004 graduate of Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas, Texas. Having practiced general dentistry for 13 years, Dr. Lara currently serves as an Associate Professor at Texas A&M College of Dentistry.


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Do teeth whitening lights work?
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Do teeth whitening lights work?
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Dr. Lara Coseo reviews research data to see if teeth whitening lights really work.
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Mouthpower.org
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