TEENAGERS are using hydrogen peroxide to whiten their teeth in a dangerous new beauty trend.
TikTok videos with more than 12 million views show users explaining how to use the chemical – more commonly used in hair bleach and fertilisers – instead of dentist-approved products.
The bottles of bleach used in the clips have already sold out online as kids rush to join in the bizarre trend.
But health professionals have slammed it as “extremely dangerous” – and it could lead to tooth loss if used in the wrong way.
Dr Krystyna Wilczynski, a cosmetic dental surgeon, told The Sun: “This is extremely worrying that people are willing to put their health at risk for the sake of cosmetics like this.
“It is incredibly unsafe and we as dentists are forever ensuring that we provide safe, registered and licensed FDA approved products to our patients.”
Professional teeth whitening involves making custom-made trays which fit around the customer’s teeth and ensure no bleaching fluid leaks onto the gums.
Dr Kystyna continued: “If the [chemical] we use or hydrogen peroxide is inappropriately used in the mouth, it can lead to gum irritation which can in turn lead to gum recession, tooth sensitivity and worst case scenario, tooth loss.
“As hydrogen peroxide is a chemical, it is also extremely dangerous if you swallow too much.”
The British Society of Dental Hygiene and Therapy told The Sun: “The latest Tik Tok craze with young adults using 3% hydrogen peroxide on a cotton bud could potentially cause harm to the teeth and gums.
“Whilst dental practices do prescribe products containing hydrogen peroxide for tooth whitening, they commonly use a gel in customised trays to ensure a safe and successful result, which can also last longer.”
Claudia Snell, 18, posted a video of her using the chemical on her teeth and received more than 12.4 million views on the viral video app.
In the short clip she rubs hydrogen peroxide on her teeth with a cotton bud before revealing how much whiter they appear to be just four days later.
Claudia claims the chemical can be bought for as little as £4 on eBay.
The London based TikToker told The Sun: “After learning that well-known whitening brands use a very high percentage of peroxide, I wanted to try it with a very low percentage as a mouth rinse which is used with customers at the dentist.
“But anyone thinking of trying this should always do their research like I did to make sure it’s safe and controlled.
“All whitening products are bad for your teeth – it just depends on the brand and techniques that you try.
“I’ve clarified to the viewers that it was a hack that I wanted to try but as I am not a dentist, research is very important before doing this.
“Most of the comments have been positive from dental assistants and individuals saying they have been doing this for years, although others see the name of the chemical and freak out without understanding it’s the main active ingredient in whitening products.
“It has been overwhelming but I’m happy that I’m learning more information about it.
“I do not advise anyone to do this especially if they do not feel comfortable doing so. It was an ongoing trend that I wanted to share my opinion on.”
In a worrying sign, the product Claudia used during the video has already sold out on eBay.
She explained in the original clip: “It has to be 3% and I just dipped it in and wiped it on my teeth for about 30 seconds to a minute.
“Towards the end I ended up putting it in a cap and swishing it around my mouth before I brushed my teeth.
“It is disgusting, it literally tastes like whitening strips. It’s disgusting.
“But basically after four days I had to stop doing it because it worked so well so just stop wasting your money.”
But dentist Dr Linda Greenwall told The Sun that anyone considering teeth whitening should consult their dentist before trying anything themselves.
She said: “As dentists, we are seeing an increasing number of patients desperate to whiten their already whitened teeth – a condition known as the Love Island effect.
“Excessive use of whitening products can lead to damaging the enamel, dentine, tooth structure and gum health.
“People need to be reminded that tooth whitening is the practice of dentistry which is guided by strict legislation in the UK. Tooth whitening for under 18’s is not legal.”
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TikTok user @cheyenn3 copied Claudia’s hack but said she “didn’t really see a difference” when she tried the trend.
Jayme Ellen, 16, tried it too and said she only saw a “tiny bit of difference “.
One TikTok user commented: “I’m not 100% convinced this is safe but I’m ordering some anyway.”
TikTok has been contacted for comment.
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