Light-accelerated bleaching is newer type of treatment for tooth whitening. It has to be done by a dentist who has been trained in how to use a laser for cosmetic dentistry. During a light-accelerated bleaching treatment the dentist will first spread a peroxide based gel on your teeth. The gel will sit on your teeth for around 15 or 20 minutes. Then the dentist will use a laser to accelerate the whitening process by activating minerals within the gel that is on your teeth. The results can be very dramatic, because the use of the laser can whiten teeth up to 11 shades. People like this procedure because it’s relatively quick, it only has to be done once, and there are very noticeable results. But there are some concerns about light-accelerated tooth whitening that mean you should think carefully about it before you make an appointment.
Concerns About Light-Accelerated Bleaching
The cost of this procedure is high, and many people don’t have the disposable income to pay $1000 or more for a tooth whitening treatment. Because this is a cosmetic dentistry treatment most insurance will not cover it. There are also some safety concerns about the procedure. Anytime a laser is used on the body there can be damage done, in this case there is a risk of damage to the gums. The peroxide gel used on the teeth can cause damage, inflammation and irritation to the gums all by itself. So when the gel is amplified by the laser the gums can become raw and painful for up to a week after the procedure. There is also a risk to the teeth themselves. Dentists follow up the light-accelerated whitening with a fluoride treatment to try and strengthen any teeth that were weakened by the laser. Multiple treatments could cause tooth loss or breakage later on.
Light-accelerated bleaching may be a good fit for some people, but there are some definite risks as well as the high cost of the treatment that you need to consider before you decide that this treatment is something that you want to pursue.