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So, you’ve finally decided to do something about your less than white teeth and you’ve searched eBay and purchased one of the hundreds available. 

No doubt you’ll be eager to get started, but before you do, here at The Body Clinic we’d like to share with you some of our experience of these kits so that you get the most out of them.  We’ve been selling these kits for over 2 years locally and recently opened up an eBay shop to bring all of our tried and tested products to a wider market. 

So……… here are our top tips for getting the most out of your Teeth Whitening Kit

1. Fitting the Trays

This is THE MOST IMPORTANT part of the teeth whitening process and is crucial to the success of the whitening gel in giving you those white sparkly teeth.  You need to ensure that your trays are a really snug tight fit so that the teeth whitening gel can work at its optimum level.  Although it’s obvious, the gel needs to be in constant contact with your tooth enamel in order to work and an ill-fitting tray means that the gel will sit in the tray and not come into full contact with your teeth, giving you slow, patchy & uneven results.

There are 2 things that deactivate the teeth whitening gel, saliva & oxygen, so if you get a nice tight fit with your trays then you will ensure that you minimise either of these getting in your trays during the whitening process and rendering your gel ineffective.

Most home teeth whitening kits come with ‘thermoforming’ mouth trays.  These trays have to be dipped in hot water to make them pliable in order to fit them to the shape of your teeth.  It’s best to have a trial run with the trays before you go ahead and dip them in the hot water, as once they’ve become soft you only have a small amount of time to mould them before they set, so a practice run helps you to get a feel for what you need to do once you’re moulding them for real.

So, before you soften them with the hot water, place the trays, one at a time, over your teeth and practice sucking out the air as hard as you can.  It’s also really useful to use your tongue to press the tray into the back of your teeth as you suck out the air as this helps to keep the tray firmly in place whilst it is being moulded.  When you’re happy with your ‘technique’ you’re ready to go ahead and mould those trays. 

Dip the trays, one at a time, in hot (but not boiling) water.  Leave in the water for 5 seconds – NO LONGER.  Do NOT WAVE THE TRAY back and forth while it is submerged in water.  The tab is designed for lifting only!  It will not support the tray once it is pulled out of the boiling water, in a horizontal position.  Lift the tray straight out of the water so that the hot water runs off and out of the tray.  Support the back of the tray with the fingers and/or thumb.  The trays become very pliable after being immersed in hot water so be careful when getting them into your mouth to ensure that the edges of the ‘U’ shaped tray do not fold onto themselves.

Once you’ve got the flexible tray in place, suck as hard as you can and use your tongue to both hold it in place and press it into the back of your teeth.  Press your fingers and/or tighten your lips against the front of the tray - this will form the outer surface of your teeth and gums.  The result should be a tray that is a perfect (or as near as possible) mould of your teeth.  Keep the tray in position for 30 seconds, then place the tray under cool, running water to set to a firm shape.  We have found that the trays can be ‘re-dipped’ in the hot water if you need to soften them in order to get a better fit, but this can only really be done a couple of times before the trays shrink and become useless.

2. Treatment Time

It takes about 10-20 minutes for the gel to be absorbed by your teeth, thus the necessity for trays that are moulded to the exact contours of your teeth.  If you take the trays out before the initial 10 minutes is up, then the treatment time will not have been enough for the gel to be effective and start working.  However, as stated above, saliva & oxygen deactivate the gel.  You will naturally get oxygen and saliva in the trays during the whitening process and it has been shown that after 30 minutes of continuous wear, teeth whitening gel has dropped to below 50% effectiveness because of the oxygen & saliva that will have become present in the trays.  Therefore, if you wish to continue whitening your teeth during that session, take the tray out, rinse out all of the old gel and re-apply fresh gel.  Wearing your tray for longer than 30 minutes using the same gel will NOT speed up the whitening process, it is pointless keeping the same gel in for extended periods of time as it simply won’t be effective.

3. How Much Gel Should You Use?

With care, start at one end of the tray and squeeze out a continuous line of gel, continuing around to the other end.  Squeeze out only enough gel so that when the tray is placed, the teeth are coated with little excess to minimise gel contact with gums.

Place the tray into position over teeth.  If some gel seeps out over the edges, wipe off and spit out the excess.  Try to apply less gel next time, to a point where little excess is created.  If you have a tight fitting tray then you only need a minimal amount of gel in order to ensure that all of your teeth are in contact with it during the whitening process.

Remember that teeth whitening gel (or carbamide peroxide as it is technically known) is a form of BLEACH.  Whilst it is safe to use on your teeth, it should not be allowed to come into contact with your gums if at all possible.  A good tip is to trim your mouth trays to your exact teeth / gum line as this will allow the gel to only be on your teeth.  If it does come into contact with your gums for any length of time it will make your gums sore, however this will subside once you stop using the gel, but it is best to do all that you can to avoid contact.

4. A Few Last Points……….

If you’ve followed all of the above advice, you should soon have lovely white sparkly teeth.  However, remember that it is an ongoing process during the treatment and teeth (which will have taken YEARS to discolour) will not miraculously whiten overnight or after 1 application of gel.  It will take a number of weeks to achieve optimum whiteness.  It is normal that your teeth will whiten at different rates.  This is simply due to the thickness of your enamel or to calcium deposits. The whitening gel is able to penetrate and whiten the enamel quicker on thinner surfaces. This will even out as you continue to use the product. This most often occurs on the tips of the teeth where the enamel is thinner due to use. Occasionally, small round white spots occur due to poor calcium deposits. They will be more noticeable during the whitening process, but will disappear within days of ceasing treatment.

If your teeth become sensitive during the whitening process decrease the wearing time of the gel.  Start off with 10 minutes (the least you can do whilst still maintaining a degree of effectiveness) and gradually increase the time every few days until you can wear the gel for the full 30 minutes.  Another tip is that if you do have sensitive teeth, brush your teeth with toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth immediately before you apply the gel, this will help decrease sensitivity during the treatment process.


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