Following calls by the General Dental Council (GDT) to change the law and dental regulations to stop non-dentists carrying out teeth whitening treatments, those changes have been put in place and the law come into force in a move that has been applauded by the British Dental Health Foundation and the UK’s leading cosmetic teeth whitening clinic, Smile Tech.
A spokesperson for Smile Tech, which is one of the largest cosmetic teeth whitening providers in the UK and operate in shopping centres says, “We employ dentists to provide high quality, professional, safe treatments and an affordable price to the customer and that is why we have over 20,000 happy customers on our books to date.” They add, “We have always felt strongly about and fought those providers who have ignored the health and safety risks and given the professional teeth whitening clinics a bad name.”
Before this law change came into place, the regulations regarding tooth whitening procedures were a bit of a grey area. The 1984 Dentists Act came at a time before teeth whitening was a common practice, with the Act stating that “only dentists can perform dental procedures.” As teeth whitening is often seen as a cosmetic process as opposed to a dental process, non-dentists and non-dental professionals were able to carry out the treatment.
“There was often a lot of bad press towards teeth whitening clinics and providers that operated from shopping centres because there was very little control over who could or couldn’t carry out this procedure.” Smile Tech’s spokesperson explains, “We really suffered from this, as even though we have always used fully trained dentists, our Smile Tech premises are within shopping centres so we were bundled into this ‘unsafe’ category – which Smile Tech really isn’t!”
Smile Tech are now hoping that with local treading standards officers and the General Dental Council taking action to close down and prosecute any premises continuing to let non-dentists and non-dental care professionals carry out teeth whitening treatments, their customers and prospects can rest assured that they are safe in Smile Tech’s professional hands.
“Every single one of our clients have to go through a full and thorough consultation with our dentist before they undergo their teeth whitening treatment. Each year we turn away hundreds of people who, following their consultation, have been found to be unsuitable for the procedure.” Says the spokesperson for Smile Tech. They continue, “During the treatment’s set-up, we go to great lengths prior to applying the whitening gel to completely and totally isolate the teeth to ensure that the gel will not come into contact with the client’s gum. We also use a destaining agent and a de-sensitiser to give our clients the safest and most comfortable experience, whilst of course still achieving a great result.”