According to experts at the British Dental Foundation, people wanting to emulate their favourite celebrities with a pearly white grin should leave the job to the professionals, rather than purchasing a DIY kit and having a go themselves. Dental adviser for the BDF, Karen Coates, has commented that take-home products are not very effective and the procedure should be carried out by a qualified individual.
Ms Coates said that kits purchased over the counter from cosmetic stores and pharmacies contained less that 0.1% hydrogen peroxide, a tiny amount that couldn’t possible hope to break down deep staining. They can also put the teeth at risk of heightened sensitivity or enamel erosion, with sustained use. Professional grade whitening solutions contain much more bleach, in some cases upwards of 20%, but it wouldn’t be safe to allow to public to try the procedure on themselves; with such a high peroxide content, the potential for disaster is greater.
Ms Coates went on to talk about the kinds of things that could stain the enamel – even after a whitening treatment, naming curry, tea, coffee and red wine as the main culprits. She also added that if people would still rather carry out teeth whitening at home, they should make sure the product they select has the BDF’s logo on the packaging, which indicates that there are no harmful acids or abrasives inside.