I recently had Zoom Whitening done and my dental office made a big deal about preparing me for the blue light. I’m thrilled with the results and my teeth have never been brighter, but I was talking with my boyfriend after the procedure and he laughed it off. He said that the blue light is just a gimmick, and that it doesn’t do anything. Does the blue light used in Zoom Whitening actually have a purpose, and if so, what does it do? — Shyla
The blue light associated with Zoom Whitening and other systems is highly-debated, and it’s possible your boyfriend stumbled upon some of the less-credible information on the net. The blue lights are LED lights, and each system projects the light at a slightly different intensity. There are basic home systems that like to include a single LED for the sake of show. It kind of resembles the blue light that people are familiar with, and have seen on makeover shows. Sometimes those lights work as a timer, and can boost consumer satisfaction, simply because the individual feels like it’s doing something. On the other hand, professional-strength systems include very powerful lights, that can actually be dangerous if proper precautions aren’t taken. Although similar lights are used in some medical treatments, and have even been shown to impact mood in people who suffer from SAD, lengthy exposure to professional-grade systems can actually burn the skin, just like a sunburn. Therefore, Zoom Whitening offices will take great care to block out your gum tissue, and will give you sunblock and eye protection, too.
Even though the light is cool, it’s very intense, and it triggers a reaction in the Zoom Whitening gel, so that it works even quicker. Studies that have compared Zoom Whitening results with and without the blue light generally find there’s a remarkable difference between the final shades. Other systems don’t fare as well in these sorts of trials, and that has a lot to do with the quality of the lights included in the system. The active ingredients in the prescription-strength gel is effective by itself, which is why your office can send you home with the same product, though usually at a lower strength, and you can do touch-ups at home. However, your results with in-office whitening will be quicker and more dramatic, because of the gel’s concentration and the quality of the activating blue light. Hope this helps settle the dispute!
This post is sponsored by New Orleans cosmetic dentist Dr. Duane Delaune. Read more about why many consider Dr. Delaune to be the best dentist in New Orleans.