Safe Teeth Whitening Checklist

Teeth whitening is widely available around the world, with over the counter products sold at our nearest convenience stores and beauticians offering the treatment from their salons. 

However,  it is in fact illegal for anybody but a dentist to perform teeth whitening. Store bought or non regulated products purchased over the internet can also be dangerous. 

The dangers  of unsafe teeth whitening include permanent disfigurement, severe burns, and unfixable damage to teeth and gums. In some cases even blindness has been an unfortunate result of unsafe teeth whitening. 

A professional teeth whitening service performed by a dentist is the only way you should whiten your teeth. Please note a dentist will undertake a thorough examination of your teeth and mouth to ensure your teeth are suitable for teeth whitening. Pregnant women are not advised to have teeth whitening and neither are those with severe health problems with the teeth and gums. 

Check GDC Register 

Treatments should only be carried out with a GDC registered dentist who has undergone 5 years of training. This is because it is a dental procedure and dentists are trained to understand the structures of the mouth for years and can recognize diseases. You can check the register on the General Dental Council’s website, and if you can’t find the name, chances are they are not legally allowed to whiten your teeth. 

Clinical Hygienic Setting 

All dental professionals and dental practices must adhere to the Health Technical Memorandum 01-05 (HTM 01-05).  This covers decontamination in primary care dental practices. This is particularly relevant to the vaccinations dental staff must have for Hepatitis B, a blood and saliva-borne disease. 

Illegal mobile teeth whitening practitioners, salons, beauticians and pop up teeth whitening practices are not adhering to the HTM act and often practise the procedure in non hygienic settings.This puts clients at risk of not only damage to teeth and gum health but also person to person transmission infections. 

Safe Ingredients

Dentists use regulated, quality teeth whitening products and can recommend the correct dosage for individuals. The safe, regulated, prescription-only whitening gel can contain up to 6% hydrogen peroxide or equivalent (16% carbamide peroxide).  This is highly effective, long lasting and safe.  

People performing illegal treatments use less the legal amount or sometimes higher than the legal amount. They buy products from suppliers with no professional knowledge of the content or accurate strength. Whitening gels sink directly onto teeth, which can cause permanent damage and pain. 

Bespoke Whitening Tray

Every mouth is unique, so having bespoke whitening trays made by professionals who specialise in making dental products is another vital aspect of safe teeth whitening. 

Over the counter teeth whitening trays are often one size fits all, which is extremely dangerous. Dentists use bespoke trays because they fit teeth perfectly, ensuring the whole tooth is perfectly targeted. They are also bespoke fitted to ensure whitening gels don’t leak out onto gums and mouth areas which can cause burns and further damage. 

Professional Dentist Management

A dentist will manage your overall treatment, including adjusting the prescriptions to fit your needs. They provide ongoing after care to make sure your teeth are in good health and advise you on keeping your newly whitened teeth whiter for longer. 

Non professionals do not have to adhere to any after care and ultimately cannot treat you for any damage that may have been caused.   

Legal Cover 

Prolonged contact with whitening gels not containing the appropriate concentration of peroxide, and other methods of illegal teeth whitening, have led to disastrous consequences for unfortunate people who have trusted in the treatment provided by an illegal practitioner. 

As the High Court deemed teeth whitening as a dental skill, it is illegal for non professionals, i.e those other than dentists and dental hygienists, to carry out the procedure. If non professionals are found to carry out the illegal procedure they can be prosecuted. 

Insurance is not available to non-professionals, so there will be no cover if anything goes wrong. 

Hopefully, with all the above considered, you can use the checklist for your peace of mind when looking at teeth whitening options. Get in touch with your dentist today about Boutique Teeth Whitening. 

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