Do you have ‘English teeth’? I do – at least, I did. A combination of botched orthodontic work, a lifetime of occasional smoking and a three coffees a day habit had left me with a bit of wonky yellow smile.
I thought about whitening them but then I don’t even like people with fluorescent white teeth like Ross from that Friends episode or all those poor Apprentice candidates. But then I went to see my old dentist Rhona Eskander at the Chelsea Dental Clinic and she put her foot down. A month later and my teeth could star in an advert for Daz.
This is how it all works: first Rhona cleaned my teeth took x-rays and lots of photographs and a scan of my teeth. No gunky impressions to be seen here - it’s a 3D image sent digitally to the lab who then make a model of your teeth. Rhona gave me some preparation de-sensitising toothpaste to use to get my teeth ready for the treatment.
Two weeks later I came back to receive my moulds and be taught by dental hygienist Carly how to use the Enlighten gel. Essentially I was to put a small amount of the gel inside each tooth impression on my moulds and then wear them overnight. Carly warned me of sensitivity but assured me it would be nothing too bad.
I was concerned I would struggle to sleep with the moulds - but while of course sleeping with them isn’t as comfortable as sleeping without them, this turned out not to be that much of a problem.
In terms of pain, every now and then I would experience a shooting pain feeling in one of my teeth lasting about ten seconds. But this settled down.
Within two night of wearing the gel in the moulds my teeth were noticeably whiter, and by the end of the two weeks my husband pretended to be blinded every time I smiled - which after a lifetime of yellowish teeth I took as a great compliment.
I facetimed my sister and she said ‘what have you done to your teeth you look like you should be on the Only Way Is Essex’. Anyone who has a sister knows this is a standard reaction to something fabulous happening to you.
Two weeks after the start of treatment I went back to Carly and she topped me up with two 15 minute blitzes of a stronger concentration in my moulds to guarantee the brightest possible shade. I left the clinic with my teeth positively gleaming.
The best bit? Once you have your moulds, you can buy single tubes of Enlighten for £45 to top up as you please. Carly recommends doing one night of whitening around every three months.
Enlighten teeth whitening costs £895 at Chelsea Dental Clinic; chelseadentalclinic.co.uk