Monday 2 March 2015

Enlighten Smiles (Teeth Whitening)

When you look at someone - what is the first thing you notice about them?

enlighten bag

Is it their eyes, their nose, their bum, their bulge, their breasts ... I'm sure the answer is different for everyone but for me ... it's always the teeth.

My teeth are not wonky, or missing or chipped - they are a slight shade of yellow. Many people will look at me and say that I'm mad and that they are fine however I don't feel comfortable and I hate smiling or talking fully with my mouth open - lots of people will notice I tend to look elsewhere when talking or I mumble lots.

It wasn't that I didn't take are of my teeth - my parents ensured my brother and I brushed every morning and night - we visited the dentist regularly and I had two braces to align my teeth and push my teeth forward - both worked great. My mother was recommended by my surgeon (when I had two teeth out) to give me fluoride tablets in addition to my brushing (for those of you who don't know fluoride is found in toothpaste and there is sufficient amounts in toothpaste) so I consumed them tablets for a few months until my next dentist appointment to which my dentist was furious and told my parents to stop using them immediately. During this time I think I developed: dental fluorosis - which is a developmental disturbance of dental enamel caused by the consumption of excess fluoride during tooth development. My teeth were never pure white - I can't remember a time in my life they were. They might have been a dull shade of white verging on a shade of yellow but never white.

This year after lots of thought and research and deciding that I wanted to stop feeling sorry for myself - I looked up private dentists who offered teeth whitening in my area. I found a dentist in the next town over whom offered the service for £399. The dentist obviously just provides the tools - everything else is provided in a home-kit which you get to take home.

To start at the beginning - I went for my initial checkup to ensure I would be a suitable candidate for teeth whitening - apparently it's a good thing if your teeth are slightly yellow. I was told I was a 'go' for the tooth whitening and was only told that 'how white' my teeth would go would depend on the oxygen level in my teeth.

enlighten moulds

enlighten moulds

The dentist then took moulds of my top and bottom of teeth and told me that it would take up to 3 weeks for the moulds to be sent off and made and sent back (moulds pictured above).

Fast forward: 3 weeks and another appointment

The dentist showed me how to put my moulds in and how to take them out and explained what I had to do each night.

I was given the 'home kit' and was on my way.

home kit enlighten

home kit enlighten

Included in the kit was:

1 x 14 pack of de-sensitising buds
1 x syringe of 10% gel (white)
1 x syringe of 16% gel (green)
2 x little nibs for the syringes
1 x pack of tooth serum toothpaste

Instructions are as follows:

1. Brush my teeth with the 'tooth serum' toothpaste before bed.
2. Take 10% (white) gel and put a nib on the end of syringe.
3. Each syringe will last 7 days (there are markers on the syringe for each day) - squeeze gel into moulds.
3. Dry and remove excess saliva from teeth by sucking - place moulds on teeth and push firmly down. 
4. Go to sleep.
5. Wake up and wash moulds
6. Clean teeth with 'tooth serum' toothpaste again.
7. Go about your day.
8. Repeat each night until 10% white gel is used up.
9. Carry on for another 7 nights with the 16% green gel.
10. Continue cleaning with 'tooth serum' toothpaste.
11. Treatment is complete.

12. Possibly follow up with dentist.

I currently finished my 7th night on the white (10%) gel last night so will be starting the green (16%) gel tonight.

I hope this was interesting for you - apparently Enlighten Smiles is a widely used company for teeth whitening for private dentists however I struggled to find any information on the web about it before I went to my appointments so hopefully anyone considering this will find this post or anyone considering teeth whitening can find out more information about it.

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