A recent study showed that about 25 million Brits don’t brush their teeth daily.
Though many are familiar with comments surrounding the myth of bad British teeth, numbers like this certainly don’t do much to disprove it.
If you’re feeling self-conscious about your teeth, there’s no reason to hide. Today, there are numerous teeth whitening gel kits and whitening strips you can choose from.
Even better? You can easily whiten your teeth from the comfort of your own home, over the course of just a few weeks.
But what are the differences between these gel kits and whitening strips? In this post, we’ll make it clear.
Understanding At-Home Teeth Whitening
Before we begin to discuss the differences between strips and teeth whitening gel trays and kits, let’s make it clear how they work.
In general, you’ll need to dedicate an absolute minimum 30 minutes every day to wearing the strips or gels.
If you use gel trays, you’ll need to wait to eat after use. If you can avoid eating or drinking anything other than water for an hour after you finish whitening, you’ll see much better results.
If you absolutely must drink, it’s best to do it through a straw.
Most customers experience anywhere between a 5-7 shade difference in the whiteness of their teeth.
So, what are the agents in these gels and strips that actually do the whitening? It’s a combination of hydrogen peroxide and carbamide. Buying reputable at-home whitening kits ensures that you’ll get a product with a safe — but still effective — balance of these chemicals.
Additionally, if you have sensitive gums or teeth, these at-home kits may actually be a much more comfortable option for you. This is because the whitening products used at your dentist’s office have an incredibly high concentration of chemicals.
So while, yes, an in-office whitening session will give you faster results, it may cause you pain in your gums and teeth for a few days after use if your mouth is especially sensitive.
Of course, at-home kits are also much more affordable than the whitening process your dentist offers.
What Are Teeth Whitening Gel Kits?
Now, let’s take a closer look at teeth whitening gel kits and trays.
Essentially, teeth whitening gel packages come with a tray for your teeth that should comfortably fit over them. In some cases, your dentist or the company providing the whitening gel may be able to make an impression of your mouth to create the mold.
Other times, the kits will come with a “one-size-fits-all” mouth tray. If needed, you can always trim these teeth trays for a better fit. A good fit for your tray is important. If it’s too loose, you may end up losing a good portion of the gel, rendering the kit less effective.
The kit also includes a gel that includes the two bleaching agents we mentioned above, hydrogen peroxide and carbamide.
Kits are better suited for those with slightly darker stains or somewhat severe discoloration. As a result, you may find that you’ll be instructed to wear the mouth tray for a bit longer than you would the gels.
Keep in mind though, that you’ll need to fill the mouth tray with gel every time, and clean it thoroughly afterward.
Finally, always follow the instructions on the package. Leaving your tray in for too long can be dangerous to your health.
What Are Teeth Whitening Strips?
If you’re looking to get your teeth looking their best before a special occasion (or just because you’re feeling a bit self-conscious) whitening strips are a second option.
These kits contain two pre-gelled strips — one for your upper teeth and one for your lower teeth. Especially if you’re concerned about filling the mouth trays with gel yourself, these strips are a much more convenient option.
Keep in mind that these strips are entirely safe and will not damage your enamel in any way. Additionally, whitening strips are not designed to work on any dentures, crowns, veneers, or other dental work. In short: they only work on your natural teeth.
If you have braces, you should not use whitening strips or gel trays. If you are pregnant, we recommend that you speak with your doctor before using any sort of teeth whitening product.
What Else Should I Know About Teeth Whitening?
Many people want to know how long they can expect the results of their teeth whitening gel kits or strips to last.
The answer will vary, based on several factors. First, if you’re a smoker, it’s likely that your results won’t last as long (just one more reason to quit!)
The same goes if you’re an avid coffee, wine, or tea drinker. If you’re primarily concerned with lasting results, there are kits available that are geared towards lengthening your result period.
Contrary to popular belief, brushing your teeth right before you apply whitening strips or gel trays isn’t required. Instead, you can just apply them directly, no brushing. This is because the chemicals in your toothpaste may impact the effectiveness of the strips.
You should never re-use an old strip — yes, even if you note that there is still some gel left after you’ve taken it off. Keep in mind that the whitening agents will have worn off after any initial application.
Finally, if you find that, after application, you still have a bit of gel leftover on your teeth, don’t panic. This is entirely normal. All you need to do is simply rinse your mouth with water. You can also simply brush off any excess gel, or let it dissolve on its own.
Ready To Whiten Your Teeth?
Whiter teeth give you so many reasons to smile.
If you’re tired of hiding your teeth, it’s time to make a change. However, you also want to ensure that you’re working with a brand that you can trust.
That’s where we come in.
Spend some time on our website to learn more about the different whitening products we offer. Make this the summer you finally feel more confident about your teeth by using the UK’s Number 1 brand of whitening strips.