Background: The aim of this split-mouth, randomized controlled trial was to compare the whitening results of at-home and in-office tooth bleaching techniques and the longevity of their effects at nine months after teeth had been bleached.
Methods: The authors conducted a study involving a 14-day bleaching period, during which the first maxillary premolars of 17 participants, who were 20 to 25 years of age, were bleached by means of either an at-home technique involving 10 percent carbamide peroxide or an in-office technique involving 38 percent hydrogen peroxide. The authors recorded color variables as proposed by the Commission Internationale de l'Eclairage-lightness (L*), redness (a*) and yellowness (b*)-by using a spectrophotometer at baseline and at one week, one month and nine months after bleaching. They also calculated a whiteness (W) index that was based on the distance of the color value in the color space from a nominal white point.
Results: At the nine-month recall visit, comparison between the at-home and the in-office techniques did not show significantly different values for L* (P = .448), a* (P = .350), b* (P = .144) and W (P = .151) color variables. None of the participants experienced any adverse events related to the bleaching during the treatment period.
Conclusions: The study results showed no clinically significant difference in bleaching efficacy. Both techniques produced satisfactory and long-lasting bleaching results.
Clinical implications: In young adults, either the at-home or the in-office technique can be used effectively.