By Bruce Forlong.
CEO Teeth Whitening Associates Ltd, (New Zealand)
NZCTWA Registered Teeth Whitening Practitioner.
Practitioner Training and Compliance Executive for the New Zealand Cosmetic Teeth Whitening Association
In my role as Practitioner Training and Compliance Executive for the New Zealand Cosmetic Teeth Whitening Association, naturally I field a raft of questions from both new and experienced Teeth Whitening Practitioners.
There is however, one question that keeps repeating, and that question is: “I started off with great results, now the results are poor. What is happening?”
Over my past 12-years of experience, Teeth Whitening Accelerator lights have almost doubled in output radiance. At the same time to meet certain domestic legal regulations, the HP strength of whitening gels has reduced to 6%-HP, such as Beyond OSMO Whitening Gel.
The side benefit of lower HP has resulted in a huge drop in sensitivity risk and gum blanching. This has in my opinion, negated fears of sensitivity pain, resulting in happier and more repeat clients. Referrals too.
On the other hand, gel application methodology has become considerably more exacting.
Therefore, below we set out what we consider ‘best practice’ for consistent great results using low HP gels such as Beyond OSMO.
There are SEVEN critical elements to the Teeth Whitening treatment application method.
Clients must not brush their teeth within 4 hours of the beginning of their treatment. Some ‘supermarket’ toothpastes can contain microscopic fillers that can block enamel pores making it harder for the gel to leach throughout enamel ‘pores’. We suggest a good clean the evening before treatment, then brush with water only on whitening day.
Access your client’s needs – badly stained teeth require longer treatment time cycles. Certain staining types can block enamel ‘pores’ which means the gel permeates the enamel at a slower rate, hence, requiring more time. Therefore, instead of 3 x 12-minute cycles, 3 x 15-20 minute cycles can improve results.
Teeth must be dry before the first, and then each successive application of the whitening gel. Any saliva, or ‘spent’ gel can mix with ‘fresh’ gel and dilute.
The gel works best when applied thinly – too thick and light deflection may limit results.We recommend a small dab deposited upon each tooth then spread over the tooth using a ball tip applicator or flat brush is sufficient. We have found ‘less is more’ possibly because a thicker application of the gel tends to deflect and/or refract high radiance light sources.Work sequentially a quadrant at a time.
MOST IMPORTANT: Gel from the previous treatment cycle remaining in the mixing tip must be expressed out before applying 2nd and 3rd cycles (or more).This is because the remaining gel in the mixing tip has already been activated by being combined with the catalyst; it is therefore ‘spent’ and will not work.Express about 1-cm (0.5 inch) from the mixing tip before applying fresh gel to the teeth. Also using a paper towel or like absorbent material, squeeze spent gel from the applicator tool before using the tool for 2nd and 3rd treatment cycles. Again, any ‘spent’ gel on the applicator brush can dilute the ‘fresh’ gel
Gel applied during the 2nd & 3rd cycles must be spread in tiny circles or like to ensure the fresh gel is mixed with any tiny residual that could block the fresh gel directly contacting the tooth
Whatever happens, do not allow the client to rinse during the procedure. Any water will enter the ‘open’ enamel pores, dilute gel, and block results.