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A member asked:

how does the laser in laser teeth whitening actually work? i've been using at home whitening kits, which work alright, but would like to try something else. i'm having a hard time figuring out how the laser actually whitens teeth.

5 doctor answers5 doctors weighed in
Dr. Lee Patalowski
Specializes in Dentistry
Typically, : Typically, an actual laser is not used. Usually a proprietary ultra-violet light is used to activate the bleach that is placed on the teeth. The end result is similiar to the home whitening kit but is finished in about 1 hour vs. 2 weeks. I found you get quicker regression of color with the 1 hour system than the home whitening kit.
Dr. R Thomas
Dr. R Thomasanswered
Dentistry 32 years experience
There : There are several in-office whitening systems. They all work the same basic way - the light activates the peroxide solution to make it work better (more quickly and effectively). I have used several in my office and the far and away best system has been the zoom system. Regarding quicker regression of color, i find that havin my patients use the trays i provide once or twice after the in-office treatment really locks in the white. They then also have trays for later touch up.
Dr. Alan Zweig
Dentistry 45 years experience
It : It is not the light that whitens your teeth (which is usually not a laser). The light activates and energizes the peroxide molecules which are responsible for removing the stains.
Dr. Stephen Gordon
Dentistry 43 years experience
Lights work: The new zoom! system, that i use, has led light, not laser. Their own whitening agent is designed to work in conjunction with their light. Expect about 4-8 shades lighter (if your teeth are yellow or tan in color. If you teeth are gray or blue tint, then you may only get marginal improvement). I always want my patients to use custom trays after to get their teeth whiter & to use, as needed.
Dr. David Satloff
Pain Management 40 years experience
Works as catalyst: lasers are used as a catalyst to activate whitening gel to penetrate and whiten the tooth. My advise is to ask your dentist.

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Last updated Oct 4, 2016
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