I like to smile, perhaps because I am a happy person. Now smiling is good as you can brighten up somebody’s day with a smile. ‘Smile and the world smiles with you’ type of thing. mumBut smiling can have negative consequences also, as too much can give you wrinkles. Why do you think that Victoria Beckham seldom allows even the flicker of a grin across her face? But I can’t help myself; I am a happy kind of gal and I like to smile.  Even as a teacher, I seldom got really cross and used laughter and good humour more often than a grumpy face. Sometimes smiling includes flashing your choppers and that’s all well and good if you have nice sparkly ones to show off. But my pearly whites are not so white any more. It’s the red wine and coffee that does it. I know the causes, but I am not prepared to give them up!

Teeth whitening has had some bad press in the past. Remember Keith Duffy’s whiter-than-white appearance on ‘The Late Late Show’ when he nearly blinded the entire studio. (Now there’s a chap who also likes to smile.)  His teeth were whitened before the present regulations which changed the strength of bleach to 6% hydrogen. However he wasn’t as bad as Ross in that episode of “Friends” where he literally lights up in the dark.

Some of my friends had the procedure in the past. One found the process extremely painful and another warned me about sensitivity afterwards, but my mind was made up. I decided that I would take myself back to Seapoint Clinic Blackrock where I had my implants three years ago, to try out their whitening procedure.

A visit to the hygienist and a dental check-up is advised first and having established that I was suitable, it was all systems ‘glow’!

First of all, impressions were made of my teeth so that a home care kit could be made.SONY DSC

A rubber contraption was put over my lips to hold them back and expose the teeth. My gums were covered with a protective coating, the bleaching gel was applied, glasses were popped on and we were good to go! The ultra-violet light is used to activate the bleach and three sessions of fifteen minutes of whitening followed. After each session, Rachael (the whitening expert) checked I was ok and that there was no sensitivity and I was fine up to a minute before the end.


I saw a huge difference immediately and off I went with my custom-made bleaching trays and my home kit of 16% Carbamide Peroxide bleaching syringes and my set of instructions!!


Now I knew that I couldn’t have coffee and red wine while I was continuing the whitening at home for the next five days, but I didn’t know that tea and some of my favourite foods were also prohibited! Basically you can only eat white foods. Anything that might stain is not advisable, such as tomatoes. So it was porridge and eggs and chicken or fish for the next few days. I really missed my daily coffee and my morning cup of tea, but I persevered and twenty-four hours after my final treatment (when the protective layer had returned), I enjoyed my first cup in five days.

I did not experience any sensitivity at home and I am absolutely delighted with my results. My teeth are several shades lighter and one particularly yellow incisor is finally the same shade as the others. I have enough gel left for several more home treatments, but for now I will smile with confidence, but not too often. I am going to channel Victoria Beckham, look sulky and watch my wrinkles!hilda-teeth

Below you can see me with my new No 7 lipstick, a gorgeous new autumnal shade called Deep Plum from their Moisture Plus range, which I got in Boots at Terminal 1 on my way to a London wedding recently. It’s beautifully moisturising and perfect for me to show off my new-look smile.teeth