Teeth whitening: what you need to know

Teeth whitening is the most popular cosmetic dental procedure in the world. Most people want a brighter, whiter smile, so if you are researching your tooth whitening options, read on to learn how to enjoy treatment that is effective, gentle, and safe. . .

Southend Dental Care offers two teeth whitening options, using the popular Polanight and Enlighten systems. After a consultation and examination, your dentist will help you to decide which is the best system for your needs.

teeth-whiteningIf you remember only one thing about teeth whitening treatment, it is that a dentist is absolutely essential. In fact, it is the law that only a fully-qualified dentist can prescribe such treatment. A hygienist or hygiene therapist who has undergone suitable additional training can carry out the physical procedure, but only on the prescription of a dentist.

When you think about it, it’s logical and sensible. After all, if you needed a filling, wanted a dental implant, or required some dentures, you would hardly go to anyone other than a dentist. Teeth whitening is classed as dentistry by the General Dental Council (GDC) and should be considered in the same way as any other dental procedure.

Unfortunately, some unscrupulous beauty salons still offer whitening treatment, claiming that it is a cosmetic and not a dental procedure. This is a lie, and a dangerous one. It is a “cosmetic dental” treatment, and the key word in that phrase is dental.

The GDC will prosecute anyone offering illegal dentistry, so if you come across a beautician or anyone else offering the procedure, you should report it to them. Treatment from unqualified providers can be seriously damaging to your teeth and gums.

Similarly, whitening products bought from the internet should be avoided, because you can never be sure what is in them, or whether levels of any bleaching agents are safe.

Whilst products that claim to whiten teeth available from high street chemists or supermarkets are likely to be safe enough, they are also likely to be ineffective.

Remember: only a dentist can provide teeth whitening that is as reliable as it is safe. Average professional teeth whitening takes just two weeks.