If you have started using teeth whitening products at home, you might have thought to yourself “How Often Can I Whiten My Teeth?” That is a fantastic question and the answer varies. Are you still unhappy with the shade of your teeth and you want them whiter, or do you just want to maintain the shade that you have achieved?

I Love The Colour Of My Teeth, How Do I Keep It?

You’ve taken the plunge into an at-home whitening product and are thrilled with the results, now what? Most whitening Photo by Isaiah McClean on Unsplashproducts will take anywhere from 1 day to 3 months to get good results. After you have these results, there will be maintenance required.

Maintenance is required whether you whiten at home or at a dental office. If, for example, you saw a dentist for Zoom whitening, they would send you home with custom trays and a gel for maintenance throughout the year. I have heard of dentists recommending home care as much as monthly and as little as every 6 months.

I Whitened With Whitening Toothpaste

If whitening toothpaste did the trick for you, you can just continue on your merry way with twice daily use. This should prevent any further stain from building on your teeth and keep them bright and white.

My answer is slightly different if you have success with an activated charcoal toothpaste. These are not recommended for daily use by any dentists that I am aware of and should be used only as needed. If you notice discolouration or stain returning to your teeth then re-use is warranted. Once again, consult your dentist regularly if you use this product to ensure that it is not too abrasive for your teeth.

Crest Whitestrips Were My Product Of Choice

Crest 3D White Whitestrips come in a variety of formulations and strengths. Please see my previous post about the differences between them. Often within the packaging it will state the estimated amount of time that results should last.

The whitestrips with blue light package states that results can last for up to 1 year. I would then assume that you will need to complete this process every 6 months to one year to maintain results. The gentler products may only last for 6 months time and you would therefore be using them every 3-6 months to maintain that bright white shade.

A great way to reduce your need to re-apply whitestrips is to use a whitening toothpaste daily. All the major toothpaste manufacturers make whitening toothpastes that are safe to use twice daily.

I Used A Gel Alone Or With A Blue Light System

These tend to be the most powerful and expensive of the at-home whitening options. It is safe to assume that you should be able to use them less often to maintain results. I would argue that once every 6 months to 2 years should be enough maintenance.

As stated above, you can also add in a twice daily whitening toothpaste into your routine to stretch the length of time between applications. Another option is a whitening mouthrinse. I don’t love the flavour of the whitening toothpastes out there and the mouthwashes are more appealing to me.

I Have Whitened And Am Still Not Happy

If you have tried one or more whitening products and are not happy with the results you have achieved, you have many options available to you. You could always try another product with a different method and in some cases, repeat an application of the product you already tried.

Toothpaste Didn’t Get My Teeth White Enough

If you tried a toothpaste to whiten and have seen little when it comes to results, then dive into another product. As I have stated before, toothpastes target stains and if the colour of your teeth is not due to staining alone, you will need a more powerful product.

Toothpastes tend to be very gentle and are often used in conjunction with other whitening products. Pick up a set of Crest Whitestrips or a blue-light system and change the internal colour of your teeth. It is safe to use these products together and by targeting both stain and the natural colour of your teeth, you are more likely to be successful.

I Tried Whitestrips But I Need More

Crest Whitestrips are one of my favorite products. They are easy to use, effective and not expensive. If you have used one of their products and still want to be whiter, you have 3 options as I see it.

If you used one of the gentler products such as Gentle Routine or Vivid, you could try to use one of the Luxe products or the light system. I would wait until any residual teeth sensitivity is gone before trying again though. It is normal for teeth to be sensitive to cold after whitening for up to 2 weeks.

Another choice is to move to a gel and tray system or a blue-light system. These tend to be more powerful than whitestrips alone and may get you an additional 2-4 shades lighter. Remember that you can always add in a whitening toothpaste or mouthrise as well to see if surface stain is part of the problem.

If all else fails, go and see your dentist. Your family dentist will have products available that can not be purchased online or in store for home use. The dentist should also be able to tell you what shade you can expect to get to and if it is safe to whiten more than you have already.

Please Take A Break If Your Teeth Hurt

The most common complaint during and after teeth whitening is sensitivity of the teeth and the gums. It is necessary to give your system a break so that the equilibrium can be set again.

Whitening opens up the pores in your teeth thus allowing the nerve to feel things more intensely. These channels will close back up on their own and your teeth will feel normal again but it can take some time in many people. Always make sure that your teeth are feeling good before you whiten again.

Good luck and all the best on your journey to bright, white teeth!

Dr. Jen


  1. Reply

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  2. Reply

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    • Reply

      Thank you for your kind words. I work very hard to be approachable. I’ll do my best to keep the boring jargon out!

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