Tooth whitening website to educate public and profession

A NEW website that aims to educate the public and the dental profession on safe and legal tooth whitening was launched earlier this month.

The website - www.safetoothwhitening.org – is the home of TWIG – the Tooth Whitening Information Group. This is a group of dental professional bodies and manufacturers who are "concerned about the problem of harmful, illegal products and of unqualified people carrying out tooth whitening". Among members and representatives are the British Dental Health Foundation, the BDA, the British Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Philips Oral Healthcare and Henry Schein.

The website provides clarification of the law on tooth whitening and includes FAQ sections aimed at the public and the dental profession, as well as beauticians who may believe they are offering tooth whitening legally.

The site also features an automated form for users to report any illegal tooth whitening treatment. TWIG will then pass this information to the GDC and/or Trading Standards for further action.

Dr Nigel Carter OBE, Chief Executive of the British Dental Health Foundation, said: "Since the ruling [2102 EU Council Directive on tooth whitening] was announced it is clear many people offering tooth whitening are still unaware of the rules and are continuing to practice illegally. The public are being misled and placed at risk of permanent damage to their teeth.

"Tooth whitening is a dental procedure. This has recently been confirmed by the High Court following action by the General Dental Council against a beautician carrying out tooth whitening. Following this clarification of the law the website will help to inform, educate and reassure the public about all things tooth whitening."

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