Oral health is being damaged by beauticians offering teeth whitening, and selling illegal whitening kits.
Using dangerously concentrated chemicals to whiten people’s teeth, beauticians and other unlicensed practitioners are leaving patients with permeant oral damage.
Only dentists are allowed to use the maximum strength “bleach” to whiten teeth, but beauticians are using the 6% hydrogen peroxide to offer the treatment at discounted rates.
In addition to this, many outlets sell illegal teeth whitening kits which, according to the Local Government Association, can contain 300 times the legal limit of hydrogen peroxide.
The Department of Health said that people applying products with a content of over 6% hydrogen peroxide, were putting their teeth and gums at serious risk.
Cllr Simon Blackburn, from the Local Government Authority, told the BBC: “Illegal DIY teeth whitening kits may promise fast results and a brighter smile but those containing dangerous levels of hydrogen peroxide are the equivalent of brushing with bleach and can put oral health at risk,”
Last year the British Dental Association prosecuted 32 people but said recent fines had been “derisory” and tougher sanctions were needed to stop this practice.
The higher rates of hydrogen peroxide found in many of the kits mean it would be like brushing your teeth with bleach. This could cause blisters, burns and other damage to your mouth.
Cosmetic dentist, Dr Sameer Shah, based in Norwich, told Sky News that it is important that the treatment is performed by someone medically qualified.
“The health of the patient will have been ascertained before we start and a correct diagnosis achieved and that’s something a beautician cannot do,” he said.
Dr Shah continued: “Beauticians have had none of this training and they don’t know how it can affect the dental health or oral health.
We also don’t know what beauticians are actually putting on your teeth, what the product is, what the concentration.”
Although many beauticians offer the service for a lot less than the dentist, the damaging effects caused when the procedure is performed incorrectly are lost lasting.
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