We have found Zoom to be a waste of time. The results are never what we would like to see. Tray whitening is THE most effective method of whitening.
Custom trays worn at home are the best!
Teeth whitening can not be completed in one office visit. For this reason, custom trays worn at home are the best way to whiten your teeth. Whitening teeth depends only upon the strength of whitening gel used, and the time it is on your teeth. The custom trays with a strong whitening gel, work well, are cost effective, and safe.
Zoom Teeth Whitening vs Tray Teeth Whitening
I have the Zoom system and have yet to see Zoom treatment that was effective without additional home tray wear. In addition the sensitivity with Zoom can be extreme.
Tray wear works and works well but you have to be disciplined enough to wear the trays for about 2 weeks.
All bleaching is temporary
Most sensitivity from whitening is from dehydration during the process, and goes away in 24 hours. Some Ibuprofen in advance can prevent extreme pain, but discomfort is common.
While Zoom is a single visit process, the effects are hit or miss. Some people are happy, some not. Effectiveness is truly dependant on dose, duration and frequency. Dose would be concentrations of gel, duration would be how long the teeth were exposed (all night long? 2 hours per day?) and frequency would be how often (daily? every other day?). The take home trays allow more duration and frequency but usually a lower dose (concentration). But this usually results in a deeper penetration of the bleach, meaning lasts longer.
Zoom is usually a higher concentration but shorter exposure. It gives a nice immediate effect but longevity varies from person to person. The higher fee is for the chair time in the dentist office and added cost to the materials. Most people that have done it have been happy with the results and have felt the higher fee was worth it.
My experience is that the best result is a combination, often called "Deep Bleaching" in many offices.
Zoom is faster than trays, but I always recommend both for a better result. Zoom just reduces the amount of time you need to wear the trays. Trays alone will take weeks. All teeth whitening can be a bit painful which is temporary. If you want a nose job, then you expect the nose to be sore after the procedure. White teeth come with a price: temporary tooth sensitivity! The result is worth it, trust me!