ADA Statement

The Safety And Effectiveness Of Tooth Whitening Procedures


As the cosmetic dentistry industry has matured, the American Dental Association Council on Scientific Affairs has kept a keen watch on the development of tooth whitening techniques. With so many consumers opting for whitening their teeth, the American Dental Association decided to create uniform definitions for the products. As you could deduce, teeth whitening refers to any process that will make whiten the appearance of teeth. There are two methods that can achieve this:

  • Bleaching, which changes your tooth’s natural color. These products are comprised of peroxides that will remove both surface and non-surface stains

  • Non-bleaching, which will remove only surface stains

Home Bleaching Kits


Home bleaching kits, as specified by the American Dental Association and bear the ADA Seal, contain 10 percent carbamide peroxide. This level is considered both safe and effective. There are side effects however, which include:

  • Tooth sensitivity, which mostly occurs during the initial stages of treatment

  • Irritation of tissues in the mouth, specifically the gums, and occurs from a tray that doesn’t fit rather than the bleaching chemicals

The above side affects are temporary and will subside after treatment. Home bleaching kits are the more conservative of methods of all teeth whitening techniques. However, sometimes that is all you need to achieve your desired results. Our office will make a specially designed take home kit for you. The success of a teeth whitening procedure, especially a home bleaching kit, is highly dependent on your habits. Learn how to get the most out of your teeth whitening procedure by reading our Post on Tips to Make Your Teeth Whitening Last.

In-office Bleaching

Professionally applied bleach whiteners are products that contain 15 to 35 percent hydrogen peroxide. Occasionally a light or laser is used to accelerate or activate the whitening process. While home bleaching kits are designed for use over a two to four week period, in-office bleaching procedures take approximately an hour. The side affects are similar to home-bleaching kits but, as stated by the American Dental Associations, permanent tooth damage has been reported on rare occasions. Our Manhattan office agrees with the ADA’s recommendation for patients to discuss with their dentists the most appropriate form of treatment to achieve their desires. We provide two in-office bleaching options, BriteSmile, which can whiten teeth nine shades in just over an hour, and LumaArch, which can whiten teeth 3-4 shades. Please contact our New York cosmetic dentistry office for a Teeth Whitening consultation with Manhattan Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Iott.

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