Options for whitening your teeth for a brighter, whiter smile.

Options for whitening your teeth

If you have been thinking about whitening your teeth, read this post to know the different options, cost and effectiveness. Dr Toni goes through 5 whitening products that will brighten your smile.
Are you thinking about whitening your teeth? Check out this post that shows the different options, cost and which products are most effective. Before buying anything you need to read this.

You notice your teeth are not as white as they used to be. You remember having a brighter smile back in the day.

It’s ok. I promise. With age and the foods we eat you will notice your smile will slowly lose that bright white appearance.

It doesn’t help that everyone on tv has these unnatural white smiles and you notice yourself comparing your teeth to the celebrities.

First off, you are gorgeous the way you are, but I know that we all want to look and feel our best. Let me share with you some options for whitening your teeth if you are on a budget or just want the best results.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission if you make a purchase using any of the links.

If you have been thinking about whitening your teeth, read this post to know the different options, cost and effectiveness. Dr Toni goes through 5 whitening products that will brighten your smile.

Notice your teeth are not as white as they used to be? Let’s talk about whitening options.Click To Tweet

Whitening toothpaste

There are several different options if you want a whiter smile.  These options range in price, effectiveness, and frequency to get results.

The first and most affordable option is whitening toothpaste. Whitening toothpaste can run around $5-15. Whitening toothpaste can help, but honestly, they are only good at lifting surface staining and take a long time to see results.


White strips

White strips are relatively affordable, but you will have to use them quite a few times before you actually see results.

I have tried several brands including the Equate Dental White Strips (the Wal-Mart store brand) and Crest White Strips.

These can run anywhere around $15-40 depending on the brand and the number of strips in the box.  I have found that consistency is key with getting the results that you want.

Don’t expect your teeth to be significantly whiter after using the strips 2 or 3 times.  You will have to use them as directed for at least a week before you to start seeing results.

I have found Crest is the big player when it comes to white strips.  Crest has a new whitening system, 3D Whitestrips with light, that is a little more on the pricey side. This product retails around $99.

In addition to the strips, the kit comes with a light.  The light is similar to the light used in the professional whitening treatments. Crest claims that after using this product  “the result is dramatically better whitening compared to strips alone that lasts up to 36 months.”

I want to try this system myself and give you my honest feedback.  I will have to get back to you on this one, but I’m pretty sure it works well.


Home Whitening Kit

One of my favorite products to use at home is SpaDent Natuals Professional Whitening and Aftercare. 

This products contains all natural ingredients and you don’t have to worry about the sensitivity!

SpaDent Naturals Whitening Kit for a whiter smile without the sensitivity

It is easy to use and you can see results as soon as you start using it.

It comes with a red and blue LED light.  The blue light is to help activate the whitening ingredients and the red light helps with stimulating health gums.

If you are interested in this kit, check out here and make sure to use the promo code DR. TONI to get 20% off!

Learn more about this product and see my results, you have to check out this post.

Custom trays

Your dentist can provide options for whitening that may be a little pricey, but will definitely give you results.

You can have your dentist make you custom trays and provide you with whitening gel. I prefer this option for two reasons:
1. the whitening gel is a lot stronger than most of the gel in the over the counter white strips.
2. you can control how much you want to whiten to get the results you like without a lot of discomfort.

Custom bleaching trays are an option for having a brighter smile. Check out this post from drtonidds.com

The process is pretty simple. Your dentist or their dental assistant will make impressions or molds of your teeth and use it to make the custom trays. Most of the time the trays are flexible and clear. Your dentist will give you instructions on how to place the gel and how long to wear the trays.

Just in case if you forgot or misplaced the instructions, here is a quick video with some instructions.

In office whitening

The last option is doing an in-office whitening treatment. Sometimes your dentist may use a light in conjunction with the whiten gel.

There are many different types and brands of in-office whitening that your dentist may use.  The most popular and most effective one is Zoom whitening.  Everyone that I have seen use this particular whitening system has significantly whiter teeth immediately after treatment.  However, I have seen people suffer from severe sensitivity after using this product.

In-office whitening can range anywhere from $99-599 depending on what system your dentist is using.  This is the most expensive option, but the most effective option to getting whiter teeth.

The biggest problem with any whitening option

Sensitivity is the biggest problem with whitening.  This is the reason why I like to control my whitening treatment with custom trays or white strips. You can stop when you start to feel the little zingers coming on.  Good news the sensitivity usually subsides after a few days when you stop whitening.

If you have any crowns, veneers or fillings on your front teeth …

One small problem with whitening is that it will not whiten your teeth if you have restorations on your teeth. Any crowns, veneers or fillings on your teeth (especially the front teeth) will not change.

Before getting any crowns, veneers or fillings on your front teeth, make sure that you are happy with the shade or color of your teeth because the shade of the crown can’t be changed (without taking it off and making a new one).  Remember, whitening systems/products will only whiten your natural teeth.


There it is.  Your options for whitening: whitening toothpaste, over the counter white strips, custom trays (made by your dentist) or in office whitening treatment by your dentist.  Call your dentist and make an appointment today to discuss whitening options or drop your questions below in the comments. Make sure to tag me in any of your before and after photos on social media. I want to see it!

With lots of love,
Dr Toni

5 effective options for whitening your teeth | whitening teeth | whiter teeth


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  4. What is your favorite whitening strip? I do like crest, but I think it’s bc it’s the only one I really know.

    1. That is a good question. I don’t really have a favorite. I am like you … Crest is the big player that I know and trust. So that is what I use (when I do use white strips). I have tried the Wal-Mart store brand and they work well.

  5. roamy

    Thanks so much for sharing,this is the season that we all want that sprakling white smile.
    I was wondering, can people with sensitive gums use one of these products or is teeth whitening not safe for them.You mentioned sensitive teeth but not gums.

    1. Yes, you bring up a very good point. From my personal and patients experience, it is not so much sensitive gums, but the gums get irritated or burn if the gel seeps up on the gums. Usually, it resolves quickly (in a week or less, depending on how severe). You may even notice that the gums have a white appearance and may blister if the whitening gel sits on the gums for long periods of time.

      I am glad that you mentioned this. This is the reason why I mentioned using a small dot in the custom bleaching tray. When you out on the tray or white strips, the gel moves and you don’t want it on your gums. Thanks for bringing this up!

  6. Kayla Uimari

    These are some great suggestions! I really need to get on whitening my teeth…

  7. Rachel

    I do have some small fBillings in the front of my teeth but the darker stains around them stand out more than the fillings well if I lighten everything. At least I hope so!

  8. Chelsea Padgett

    I’ve used the Crest Whitestrips for forever. I love them! These are some great alternatives though.

    1. Me too! I used Crest Whitestrips before I even went to dental school to become a dentist.

  9. jhilmil

    I found the concept of custom trays quite unique, can be easy to wear and apply the gel basis the whitening we wish to. Great tips compiled, I need to share them with my husband!

    1. The custom trays are my favorite. It is nice to touch up things when you notice that your smile is not as bright as it used to be. They are very easy to wear and are comfortable compared to some of the other options. Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

  10. Rose

    Thank you. I had never quite looked at all the options buts currently have a kit at home I’m using. I think it’s nice to be able to do because our teeth do go through a lot.

    1. You definitely have options if the home kit you have doesn’t work for you. Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

  11. Lisa | Mom Without A Village

    I like these tips coming from an informed source. I always been afraid to try whitening, thinking that it will further damage my teeth, but some of these options may be worth a try!

    1. Thank you!! You definitely have options. If you are concerned with it damaging your teeth, definitely discuss it with your dentist to see what option would be best for you. 🙂

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