How Long Does Teeth Whitening Take

How Long Does Teeth Whitening Take?

How Long Does Teeth Whitening Take

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.Some people want to see immediate results from having their teeth whitened, while others prefer more subtle changes over a longer period to hide the fact they’ve had cosmetic dental treatment; either way, it’s important to know how long teeth whitening takes to see results before committing yourself and being unsatisfied with the turnaround time.

Let’s look at how long teeth whitening takes so you can choose the best option for treatment for you and get long-lasting results.

Does Teeth Whitening Work for Everyone?

How Long Does Teeth Whitening Take at the Dentist?

The actual process of having your teeth whitened at the dentist doesn’t take more than one hour to complete, so you can easily have it done on your lunch break! But you should be aware you’ll need a prior appointment to check that teeth whitening is a suitable treatment for you and to take a mould of your teeth if you’re having the whitening gel applied without the UV light or laser to speed up the process.

The dentist will cover your teeth with a special gel containing either hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide which brightens the appearance of your teeth, being careful to avoid your gums. A UV light or laser will then be applied to speed up the whitening process, so you can leave the dentist with a new smile in less than 60 minutes.

The length of time the whitening process takes also depends on what shade you want your teeth, as some people want brilliant white teeth, while others just want to lighten them while still keeping a natural appearance. The price of teeth whitening can also vary, depending on which dentist you visit and whether you have your teeth whitened at the dentist or at home – unfortunately, you can’t get your teeth whitened for free on the NHS.

How Long Does At-Home Teeth Whitening Take?

Whitening your teeth at home with a teeth whitening kit takes longer than it would at the dentist, as you’ll be given a gel to wear over your teeth, but won’t have the UV light to quicken the whitening process. You’ll have to visit your dentist first to check that you can safely have teeth-whitening treatments, and if so, you’ll have an impression taken of your teeth.

Then, you can take your personalised teeth whitening kit home, where you can fill the mould of your teeth with the gel and cover your teeth for up to 8 hours at a time whenever it suits you. Since the chemicals within the gel can be harmful to your gums, the mould of your teeth allows you to cover your teeth yourself without risking the chemicals coming into contact with your gums.

After coating your teeth with the whitening gel for a few hours each day, or according to your dentist’s advice, you’ll notice your teeth lightening in just a couple of weeks, with significant differences visible after three to four weeks.

Does Teeth Whitening Work for Everyone?

Teeth whitening treatments are not suitable for everyone, so if you would like to have your teeth whitened, you should check with your dentist if you can have your teeth whitened or if there are alternative options of teeth whitening that would be more appropriate for you.

Teeth whitening is not suitable for:

  • Under 18s
  • People with sensitive teeth
  • People with sensitive gums
  • Pregnant women

In rare cases, children can have their teeth whitened, but it’s both largely unnecessary for minors who don’t have all their adult, or permanent teeth yet, and can provide unnecessary risks to their gum health. Furthermore, since the chemicals used in teeth whitening are strong and potentially corrosive, people with sensitive teeth or gums shouldn’t have their teeth whitened as it could be painful or harmful. Sensitive teeth are often caused by a lack of enamel, so bleaching teeth with a thin layer of enamel is likely to be painful.

There is a lack of evidence to suggest that teeth whitening is harmful to pregnant women, however, the potential risk of using harmful chemicals for women whose bodies are going through a lot of changes and need to be healthy enough to support the growth of unborn babies, makes most cosmetic procedures, including teeth whitening unnecessary. So, pregnant women are advised to not have teeth whitening procedures.

Additionally, some types of tooth stains cannot be easily removed through teeth whitening, so some people are advised not to have teeth whitening treatments as they will be largely ineffective.

Types of Tooth Staining

Types of Tooth Staining

There are two types of tooth staining:

  • Extrinsic staining
  • Intrinsic staining

Extrinsic stains affect the outer layer of your teeth and can be easily removed with teeth whitening treatments, while intrinsic staining affects the interior of your teeth as a result of tooth or gum damage, medicine or smoking, and cannot be lightened or removed with standard teeth whitening procedures.

How Often Do You Need to Have Your Teeth Whitened?

How often you need to have your teeth whitened depends on how well you look after your teeth after your treatment. If you follow your dentist’s advice and avoid foods high in chromogens, tannins and tar that are known to stain teeth, as well as harmful sugars and acids that can cause tooth decay as well as yellow teeth, your teeth can stay white from 6 to 12 months. However, if you continue smoking and go back to consuming teeth-staining food and drink and neglect your oral hygiene, then you’ll need to have your yellow teeth whitened again after just a few months.

Tips for Keeping Your Teeth White for Longer

Tips for Keeping Your Teeth White for Longer

To save you time and money, we’ve put together a few tips to help you keep your teeth whiter for longer.

Oral Hygiene

Looking after your teeth doesn’t just mean brushing twice a day, although that’s a decent start considering ​​a Hive study showed only 39% of 25 – 34-year-olds brush their teeth once a week or less…

To properly care for your teeth, you should brush, floss and use mouthwash as soon as you wake up (before eating or drinking anything) and before you go to bed to rid your mouth of unwanted bacteria. You should also use a soft toothbrush to avoid harming the protective enamel that coats your teeth.

Smokers should also brush their teeth as soon as possible after smoking to remove the tar from coating their teeth and seeping into cracks, causing intrinsic and extrinsic staining.


For the first 72 hours after having your teeth whitened at the dentist, you’ll be advised to stick to pale and colourless food and drink for long-lasting results. You should also stick to pale foods while whitening your teeth at home. These include:

  • White rice
  • White bread
  • Poultry
  • Cauliflower
  • Apples
  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Clear water

However, to maintain white teeth for longer, you should also try to include these items into your regular diet to not stain your teeth so much, as well as cut down on food and drink that cause staining, such as:

  • Tea
  • Coffee
  • Red wine
  • Tomato-based sauces
  • Soy sauce
  • Curry

These food and drinks are high in tannins or chromogens which cause the product to be colourful, as well as cause the colour to transfer to our teeth, but you should also be wary of regularly consuming foodstuffs with high sugar or acid content, as these contribute to tooth decay, plaque buildup and extrinsic staining.

If you’ve recently had your teeth whitened or are in the process of whitening them yourself and aren’t sure if you can eat or drink a specific item, it’s helpful to remember: if it’ll stain white clothes, then it’ll stain your teeth.

Get Your Teeth Whitened Today! – Didsbury Dental Practice

At Didsbury Dental Practice, we know how much a smile can brighten up someone’s face, and how yellow or crooked teeth can cause someone to lose their confidence and even feel embarrassed to smile or laugh.

That’s why we provide affordable dental treatment, including cosmetic dentistry 24 hours a day, 365 days a year! But, why wait for the perfect smile? Book your teeth whitening appointment today!

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