Saving money is always important. However, cheaper doesn't always equate to a better value. When it comes to teeth whitening, opting for an at home treatment over an in-office treatment might not turn out to be as cheap as you think.

Recurring Treatments

Sure, the cost of a single at-home whitening treatment is likely considerably lesser than the cost of a single in-house treatment. However, there is a major difference. In order to achieve the results you want, you can expect to repeat the at-home treatment several times, whereas dramatic results can typically be achieved with just a single treatment from a dental provider.

When you add up the cost of repeat treatments, you might find that you're spending the same amount as you would with a professional treatment, if not more. Take the time to weigh the cost of recurring treatments to see if you're really saving money.

Weakened Enamel

Attempting to whiten your teeth at home can come with the cost of enamel damage. With an in-office treatment, your provider will carefully measure and monitor your exposure to bleach and other whitening agents. If your enamel is weak or there is a concern, the provider will quickly recognize it and remove the agent.

At home, you simply don't have this level of skill. You could use a mixture that has a bleach content that is too high or could leave it on for too long which will damage your enamel. In a damaged state, enamel is more susceptible to decay and your teeth will also be more sensitive to hot and cold foods.

Gum Irritation

Gum damage is another risk that at-home whitening treatments introduce. Some of the chemicals found in at-home treatment kits, including hydrogen peroxide, can burn your gums, leading to painful irritation that can also increase the chance of you developing an infection. Infections are painful and puts the health of your entire mouth in jeopardy.

While this chemical is also found in many in-office treatments, the primary difference is the fact that the provider will carefully place the gel in the tray and then wipe your gums clean to ensure it does not come in contact with your gums. This simple step helps minimize the risk of gum irritation and ensures you're protected.

If you're trying to decide between an in-office and an at-home treatment, make sure you're weighing the real cost. Spending less money and protecting your oral health is a far better value.