Tooth whitening – is it too late to start?

tooth whiteningWith everything reopening, we ask Steven Scannell whether it’s too late to get involved with tooth whitening.

1. Please introduce yourself and give us a brief background on your career to date

My name is Steven and I am a dental hygienist from Brighton after qualifying two years ago from the University of Essex.

Prior to becoming a hygienist I worked as a dental nurse for nine years.

2. Why do you offer tooth whitening?

I offer whitening to my patients as an effective non-invasive way to safely improving their smile.

3. What are the benefits to offering in practice and at home whitening as a combination?

What I find works well for my patients is using the combined Philips Zoom in-chair and home whitening.

The in-chair whitening is a great way to kick start the process. Patients are motivated to continue at home after seeing their instant results.

When the patient continues with the home whitening they often see an even whiter, more uniformed shade.

4. Why do you offer Philips Zoom whitening?

I offer Philips Zoom whitening to my patients because I find it works really well and always seems to achieve great results.

Patients also now experience less sensitivity during treatment due to the amazing built in ACP relief gel.

As a clinician the support I receive from Philips is excellent. They are always easily contactable, available to answer any questions I may have and keep me up to date with the latest products.

5. What is the patient reaction after treatment?

Patients’ reactions are normally: ‘Wow, they are whiter than I thought they would be’.

As we know everyone’s teeth absorb whitening differently so I always try to lower patient’s expectations before starting their whitening because it is difficult to guarantee a shade. Most patients tend to see, on average, five shades lighter. Then when their teeth come up to the lighter shades on the scale, A1 or B1, they are really pleased.

6. Is it too late to get involved in whitening now we’re through the pandemic and patients are back to normal life?

It is definitely not too late to get into whitening now we are coming back to a more normal life. In fact now is probably a good time to do so.

Patients are starting to socialise more, seeing friends and family. They are looking for that little boost before they go back out into the world.

It has been a very difficult year. So anything that is likely to help boost a patient’s confidence and put a smile back on their face is great.

7. Businesses and shops are reopening, dentistry will face stiff competition. How do you think you can grab their attention?

Businesses are reopening, so dentistry could face competition. However, patients need reminding that whitening is a prescription-only treatment. Only dentists and dental practices are legally allowed to prescribe/sell teeth whitening products.

Patients need to be cautious when using whitening products on their teeth that aren’t approved by dental practitioners.

In order for us to ‘stand out from the crowd’ our practice recently carried out an open day for braces, which was a big hit with patients. We are now considering having an open day for whitening and hygiene where patients can come in and discuss the whitening process and have their questions or concerns answered.

8. Is whitening something every practice should offer?

I think whitening is something all practices should offer. It is a safe, easy way to boost a patent’s smile and confidence.

There are a lot of companies who are illegally selling whitening products, both in shops and online. These could potentially harm a patient’s teeth and gums.

If all practices offered whitening, patients would more likely choose to have their whitening carried out safely by a dental professional.


For more information on tooth whitening with Philips Zoom, visit www.philips.co.uk/c-m-pe/teeth-whitening.

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