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The dangers of teeth whitening at home

Last night a consumer programme on the BBC took a closer look at the practice of DIY teeth whitening and the dangers of searching online for a cheap solution to discoloured teeth. What it highlighted is that it’s actually very easy for the consumer to think they are saving money on arranging their teeth whitening at home but the risks are considerable.

In this two part blogging series, we take a closer look at teeth whitening and the facts that you should know before buying a kit online and attempting to do it yourself.

The demand for whiter teeth has grown substantially over the past few years and involves the bleaching of your teeth to make them appear brighter and whiter. While the practice cannot make your teeth a brilliant white, it can improve the colour of your teeth by many shades.

Professionals get it right

As the programme last night highlighted, trying to do your own teeth whitening can have severe consequences. With products easily available online that are unregulated you are potentially putting your oral health at risk by using chemicals that are too strong for your teeth, which could lead to sensitivity and weakened gums. Long-term this means a moment of whitening your teeth could result in you requiring other dental treatment later on.

The NHS suggests that teeth whitening should only be performed by a dentist or regulated dental professional, such as a dental hygienist. You should be aware that places like beauty salons may well offer teeth whitening too but beware as if there is no professional present they are breaking the law and potentially putting your own oral health at risk.

It’s not just about the colour

Many people forsake their oral health by assuming that having white teeth is the be all and end all of a perfect smile. However, the reality is far different. Your oral health is actually far more important and teeth whitening should be part of overall maintenance. In other words, if there’s something wrong with your teeth, whitening them will not solve that.

It’s actually vitally important to ensure your dental health is good. Your gums should be healthy and free from peridontal disease. Your teeth should be free from decay and your teeth should have a strong constitution before you even think about teeth whitening.

After all, consider the potential harm to your mouth and teeth if you’re using a teeth whitening agent with tooth decay or gum disease?

The risks involved can be high if you take a chance on DIY tooth whitening so think before pressing the Buy it Now button and seek out a professional, qualified dentist with a good track record. Your teeth will thank you for it!

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