I recently had the pleasure of visiting The White House in Galway to get my teeth professionally whitened. A nice smile and good teeth really are one of the first things you notice when meeting a person for the first time and given my love of wearing red lipstick I had been wanting to get my teeth whitened for some time now.
I do enjoy the odd glass (read: bottle) of red wine the odd time and sadly this along with my daily caffeine hits had left my teeth looking less than pearly white.
I had been researching Teeth Whitening for some time now and decided against DIY whitening kits as when it comes to using carbamide peroxide I felt I'd be best off leaving it to the professionals.
The White House uses the Beyond Polus whitening system which features LightBridge light technology. I was worried about sensitivity beforehand so I was glad to find out that the filtration system removes any harmful heat and ultraviolet output from the whitening system - and also that the whitening gel was developed with special ingredients to reduce the risk of sensitivity.
The White House promises to whiten teeth "between 5 to 14 shades, with an average improvement of 8 shades" so it was with eager anticipation I ventured along to The White House in the Eyre Square Shopping Centre, Galway.
I went to my regular dentist a few days beforehand for an examination to make sure my teeth were good to go for the teeth whitening process and also to have a scale and polish so that I could get the best out of my experience at The White House.
Inside the clinic I was greeted by a very friendly dental technician named Saif who instantly put me at ease. After filling out a simple medical form we got straight down to business where I was shown the chair where all the magic happens;
Right from the beginning Saif explained every step of the process to me. The process began with the placement of a cheek retractor, next up was protecting my lips with a fine layer of vaseline followed by covering the gum line with a blue gingival seal which was then set with a small UV lamp. The Blue Seal Gingival Protection ensures that the whitenening gel doesn't come into contact with your gums, it can also be used as a barrier should you have exposed dentine as a result of a receding gumline.
A thin layer of the whitening gel was then applied to all of my teeth, upper and bottom arches. The gel was then activated with the placement of the special LightBridge lamp placed a few inches away from my teeth.
The timer was set for 12 minutes and all I had to do was lie back and relax!
Once the allotted time had passed, Saif came back into the room to suction off the whitening gel before applying a new layer of the gel and setting the lamp for another 12 minutes.
As I was getting the full whitening treatment done I had the gel applied and removed 3 times in total - each time the gel is given 12 minutes to do its thing under the specialised LightBridge lamp. Thus in total the actual whitening process takes just 36 minutes, however allow yourself a full hour for the process to include a consultation beforehand, form filling etc...
Throughout the entire process my dental technician popped in to check up on me at regular intervals to make sure that I was OK and wasn't experiencing any sensitivity. I'm delighted to report that I had zero issues with sensitivity - which was a worry of mine beforehand. I experienced no pain or discomfort whatsoever - the "worst" part of the treatment, if you could call it that, was having to bite down on the cheek retractor for the entire time - however this was neither painful nor discomforting.
At the end of the process I was shown the results and I have to say that I was very pleased - I noticed a definite whitening and my smile appeared much brighter. I could see instantly that surface stains were removed. I was told at the end that my teeth had been whitened 10 shades lighter - which I was very impressed by and I noted that The White House really did live up to their claim of "5 - 14 shades lighter".
I was advised for the next 24 hours to avoid any staining food or drink such as red wine, coffee, curries, chocolate, soy sauce, bolognese etc.. - basically, if it will stain a white t-shirt - don't eat or drink it! and to stick to a "plain" food diet of white foods such as chicken, potatoes, rice, white fish, pasta with white sauces etc... Also tobacco products (smoking) is a big no-no during the 24 hours following treatment as the whitening process opens the pores in your teeths enamel - meaning that they are much more prone to staining in the immediate hours following your treatment.
I'm very pleased with the results I achieved in the full whitening service - I can definitely see myself getting this done again in the future if I feel the need to "top up". The White House also offer an "Express" treatment which consists of two 12 minute consecutive sessions which is ideal for someone who previously had a whitening treatment done and wants to top up the results.
The Full In Clinic Teeth Whitening Treatment which I had done costs €250 and promises results of 7-14 shades whiter and also includes a free re-treatment valid for 18 months after the original treatment worth €99.
The Express Whitening Treatment normally costs €150, takes just 20 minutes and promises results of 3-5 shades whiter.
The White House also offers a guarantee that if they don't whiten your teeth by a minimum of 5 shades you'll get 100% of your money back!
Along with their clinic in Galway, The White House also has clinics in Swords, Cork, Dundrum and Belfast.
You can get more info on the treatment, pricing and locations here;
The White House .ie