A report by Which? has highlighted that home teeth whitening kits are being sold online with up to 300 times the recommended amount of bleach, making them highly dangerous.
Such high levels of hydrogen peroxide could cause extreme problems including burning the gum tissue and even causing tooth loss.
Which? tested 36 products, purchased online from popular outlets including Amazon, eBay and AliExpress.
A total 21 out of the 36 contained illegal levels of bleach with one at five times the limit allowed to professional dentists and an astonishing 301% above that allowed for sale over the counter.
All have now been removed from sale, but it exposes the risk faced by clients purchasing home whitening kits.
The law on tooth whitening products
UK legislation limits the concentration of hydrogen peroxide allowed in over the counter tooth whitening products to 0.1% – a level which is safe for clients to use at home, even if results may be frustratingly slow.
Dentists are allowed to use products with up to 6% bleach; but must be registered with the General Dental Council. Dental hygienists and therapists can carry out teeth whitening on the prescription of a dentist if they have the necessary additional skills
Dr Paul Woodhouse, a director of the British Dental Association, commented:
“Hydrogen peroxide is a seriously strong chemical and not to be messed with. Dentists are trained in its usage and they also know what whitening products are effective to use and safe for teeth and gums.
“If you destroy gum tissue, you are never going to get it back and you lose your teeth. If it penetrates the surface of your tooth, which is likely, it’s probably going to lead to the death of that tooth.”
A spokesperson for the Office for Product Safety and Standards added:
“There are specific restrictions in place for products of this kind and we would urge anyone who is considering using teeth-whitening products to consult their dentist first.”
Cosmetic Dentistry at The Smart Clinics
The Smart Clinics offers professional teeth whitening with fully qualified dentists who work to high clinical standards for a safe and healthy approach to whiter teeth.
Dentists also offer a full range of services from cosmetic and general dentistry to root canal treatment and implantology.
Members of our dentistry scheme benefit from:
- 2 dental examinations a year (including X-rays when necessary)
- 2 dental hygiene appointments during the year
- 20% off all dental treatments
- £40 per month or £25 per month when taken in addition to medical scheme membership
For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Non-members are also welcome to access our services on an ad hoc basis, subject to availability of appointments (priority to members). Please contact us for a quote or more information.
Private Healthcare London
The Smart Clinics is a private healthcare company established in 2013, offering a membership-based alternative to NHS care for individuals and families.
The Company describes itself as:
London’s pre-eminent integrated healthcare clinics
Telephone our team on 020 7052 0070.