Is Zoom whitening the same as bleaching?

white teeth


What is the difference between whitening and bleaching? Whitening is usually the mechanical removal of extrinsic stains – that’s called tooth whitening. It can be done with prophylaxis in our office or it can be done with airflow in our office. That’s called teeth whitening or some patients can use it at home using some whitening toothpaste. Those remove extrinsic stains from the teeth too. Now, as far as going to bleaching, it all depends on the concentration of the hydrogen peroxide or the carbamide peroxide. The main element in any teeth bleaching is hydrogen peroxide and the only variable on the whole bleaching cycle has to do with time.

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So, let’s say concentrations of bleach of carbamide peroxide is between 10% to 16%. We at HVS recommend maximum wearing the trays for max 2-4 hours twice a day. If you go to 22% I recommend max placing the 22% carbamide peroxide for about 30 minutes. When you go to the concentration of about 32% carbamide peroxide I would recommend max around 15 minutes, so the variable is the time – the higher the concentration the less time the patient should avoid the gel on the teeth.

Now, one more important point is hydrogen peroxide versus carbamide peroxide. Carbamide peroxide is actually one third of hydrogen peroxide, meaning that 10 percent hydrogen peroxide is equivalent to 80% carbamide peroxide. Now again, hydrogen peroxide bleaching gives you a whiter boost right away but after two weeks it will be the same as carbamide peroxide, so there’s a lot of variables in and as far as the bleaching goes that we in our HVS office should consider first, such as: What technique we’re going to use? Why we use hydrogen peroxide? Why do we use carbamide peroxide and do we use it with the light or we don’t?

Learn how to manage tooth sensitivity with Philips Zoom! Whitening here!

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