Due to an increased demand of people wanting whiter teeth but not being able to get professional help, many teeth whitening kits are now available over the counter. These kits were created for people who do not have time or money to make dentist office trips for teeth whitening sessions. Teeth whitening kits are readily available in the health and beauty aisle of most stores without a prescription.
Most kits are found in three styles. These styles offer whitening gels, whitening strips, and whitening trays. Most kits can be purchased from $20 to $50 and include all necessary materials for three to seven day sessions of teeth whitening.
Whitening gel kits offer many benefits. They often show the quickest results of the three types available. The gel is brushed onto each tooth separately. This allows for the whitening gel to get between teeth and into cracks for maximum whitening appearance. However, the gel works best when dried on teeth. Therefore, the process of keeping salvia from wiping the gel away and holding your mouth for the gel to work can be awkward. The gel most often comes in a tube so your can determine the amount that you wish to use at each session.
Whitening strips are typically a little more comfortable to use than the gels or trays. The strips are thin and flexible and contain a whitening gel pre-pasted onto them. Kits come with strips to fit upper teeth and lower teeth. However, most strips only cover the front teeth that are in view. Most strips do not reach the back teeth. The areas whitened by strips are the areas that the strips touch. Strips do not allow gel to work between teeth and into cracks. Therefore, those areas may not be whitened.
Two types of strips are found. Some strips need to be removed and thrown away after the whitening time. Other strips dissolve in your mouth as they whiten your teeth. Dissolvable strips are often convenient for people with busy lifestyles. Whitening strips come prepared for the number of sessions listed on the box. You do not determine the amount used as with gels in tubes.
Whitening trays are the kit that most seem to prefer. These trays are pre-filled with whitening gel and are held in the mouth during the whitening process. The gel is much more likely to reach between teeth and into cracks from a tray than from a strip. Trays offer the quickest results second to gels. Trays are not as particular about saliva interfering with the results as gels and strips. However, they are bulkier than the strips and may be considered more uncomfortable to wear. People with very sensitive gag reflexes may have a harder time using whitening trays.