While an at-home tooth whitening kit is not as effective as in-office power bleaching, with regular touch-ups, you can enjoy a bright, white smile. Dental professionals agree that the best way to maintain your white smile when using at-home bleaching products is to repeat the process every four to six months. If you have very dark stains, or tetracycline-affected teeth, you should continue home bleaching over a period of months (or up to a year) for maximum results. The newest tooth whitening strips on the market are designed for five-minute use, which is about the same length of time it takes to brush and floss. Tips for Maximum Effectiveness The stronger the peroxide formula in an at-home teeth whitener kit, the more rapid its whitening effect. However, the weaker the formula, the longer it can remain safely on your teeth. The best time to begin at-home treatment is right after a professional teeth cleaning by your dentist. The dental cleaning removes the surface layer of plaque and grime that can hinder the effects of bleaching. Both dentists and tooth whitening companies urge brushing and flossing your teeth right before any whitening treatment. If you live in the Phoenix, Arizona area and would like to learn about your tooth whitening options, please contact our Phoenix dentist office today. Desert Smiles also serves patients in the Peoria, Arizona area.