Although it is a cosmetic dental procedure, it is nonetheless a treatment which, by UK law, only dental professionals can offer.
This is really not about ring-fencing for dentists; it’s everything about keeping patients safe.
Dentists have a legal duty of care – a shared responsibility for your oral health (some of this is down to you).
A dental professional can and will examine your mouth prior to agreeing to whiten your teeth. This is so any causes for concern can be identified, which may indicated that you’re not yet ready for the whitening treatment. For example, of there are signs of any gum disease, the main ingredient in the teeth whitening product – bleach – could cause you considerable pain.
Your dentist will make sure you don’t come to any harm. Someone who is not a qualified dental professional is not in a position to keep you from pain and even damage to your mouth.
If you’re wondering why over the counter teeth whitening products are so readily available, this is because the strength of over the counter whitening is very much weaker than the products that dentists use. It follows that the result you are hoping for may not be the result you achieve the over the counter purchases, and there is no real guide as to the final shade. Your dentist can give you a much better idea of the final shade of your teeth, and what’s more, you’ll have the confidence of knowing that your new smile is a healthy one.