Laser Teeth Whitening: How it Works

Teeth whitening is a simple way to better your smile by reducing tooth discolouration. Whiter teeth make you more confident and look younger. There are many options for whitening, and one of the most popular and effective is laser teeth whitening.

In this article, we’ll explore how laser teeth whitening works and how it compares to DIY teeth whitening. If you’re curious whether the procedure is correct for you, keep reading and we at Portrait Dental will cover all the information you need.

How Does Laser Teeth Whitening Work?

This in-office procedure is considered safe and fast. Although it can come at a higher price than other treatment options, that’s because it is considered top-tier in its effectiveness. So, let’s take a closer look at this favourite whitening treatment.

What Causes Stained Teeth?

There are two types of causes for stained teeth: extrinsic and intrinsic.

Extrinsic tooth discolouration occurs on the outer layer of teeth. There are certain foods like soda, tea, red wine, and coffee cause this type of stain. The good news is that these stains can be more easily removed with DIY or at-home whitening products.

On the other hand, intrinsic discolouration occurs in the deepest layers of your teeth. There are several diseases as well as side effects from treatments like chemotherapy that cause this type of stained teeth. And more, genetics, medications, aging, and trauma can all cause this deeper staining. The nature of these causes makes this type of stain more difficult to remove. That means you’re better off consulting a professional for something like laser teeth whitening.

Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about this professional service that Portrait Dental is proud to offer. And if you’re looking for help overcoming dental anxiety, check out our article on it here.

Laser Whitening vs Other Professional Whitening Treatments

With the large variety of professional whitening treatments available, there’s bound to be some confusion about their differences.

Most in-office treatment options involve a light from a blue LED, not a laser. Both techniques have similar steps, but they function very differently. They both involve heating a gel with heat. With laser teeth whitening, the light is more concentrated, resulting in greater efficiency and speed.

Now let’s get into the fine details of the procedure!

Laser Whitening vs DIY Whitening

The difference between over-the-counter or natural at-home whitening options, laser whitening offers extreme effectiveness and a shorter treatment time. You’ve probably seen many treatments like whitening strips or gels. And if your stains are extrinsic, these might be effective. But if you have intrinsic stains, a treatment like laser teeth whitening is surely the better option.

Many different types of lasers are used for this procedure:

  • KTP
  • Diode
  • Nd: YAG

And not to mention, there’s a variety of settings for each laser. That means that laser teeth whitening is a very customizable treatment, which is one of the reasons it’s so effective. DIY or natural remedies just can’t compare to the rapid efficiency that lasers and gel will clean your teeth.

So, let’s take a look at how this advanced teeth whitening option works!

Laser Teeth Whitening Procedure Steps

Fortunately, the teeth whitening procedure is simple and does not take long either.

  1. To start, your dentist places a plastic or rubber guard in your mouth, keeping it open.
  2. Next, they apply a protective layer over your gums. This protects them from the bleaching
  3. When the protective later forms, a whitening gel is applied to your teeth.
  4. The gel is activated with a laser, creating a foam, which is left on your teeth for a few minutes.
  5. The foam is vacuumed and your dentist will rinse your mouth, removing the protective layer over your gums.

And that’s how in five short steps, you go from bothersome stained teeth to a whiter, brighter smile.


After your treatment, you’ll be advised to only drink clear liquids for at least two hours. Anything dark-pigmented will disrupt the treatment process. Generally, as your teeth may experience some extra sensitivity in this period, it’s wise to avoid anything acidic or abrasive.

Do you think that laser teeth whitening is right for you? Contact us here and book your appointment now!

Side Effects of Laser Teeth Whitening

Generally, laser teeth whitening is a safe and effective treatment. It’s very unlikely to cause serious side effects. But, there is sometimes short-term discomfort you can expect.

You might experience these symptoms, though they’re short-lasting. If your symptoms persist you should contact your dentist.

  • Tooth Sensitivity
  • Gum Irritation

If you experience more severe symptoms like damage or pain, contact your dentist immediately. The risk for damage is minor, and allergic reactions are considered rare as well. So if there’s such a small risk, are there people who shouldn’t consider this professional whitening service?

Well, if you have amalgam fillings, or if you’re currently pregnant, you might want to consider other options. For those with amalgam fillings, there’s a risk of leaking mercury. In this case, it’s best to try another option.

One of the ways you can promote a whiter smile after your treatment is through better hygiene habits. If you’re looking for a natural teeth whitening option, take a look at our article on natural mouthwash here.

Pros and Cons of Laser Teeth Whitening

Let’s break things down in simple terms so that you can make the best decision for your smile.

  • Limited treatment time
  • Highly effective
  • Requires no at-home products
  • Professional whitening reduces the risk of complications
  • Usually one of the more expensive treatment options
  • Like all whitening options, it’s not permanent
  • The deepest stains and most severe discolouration may require lifestyle changes

Professional Teeth Whitening with Portrait Dental

In this article, we’ve taken a comprehensive look at laser teeth whitening. Compared to at-home options, it is the superior option. And although it’s usually the more expensive treatment, it’s often the best option for fast and effective treatment. That being said, if you’re going to invest in teeth whitening, then it’s wise to consider healthier lifestyle choices that will prevent stained teeth from the onset.

Portrait Dental is proud to offer the best laser teeth whitening services, as well as a variety of other cosmetic dental procedures. No matter the problem you’re facing, or if you just want a little touch-up to brighten your smile, we have the professional expertise to help you. That’s why we’re the best GTA dental office– and you’ll see that once you enter our office space. We’ve put care into every detail, just like how we care for our clients.

So give us a call and get started on your journey to a perfect smile.