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All you need to know about the Enlighten system

Your questions about the Enlighten whitening system answered here.

9 October, 2020

Amongst all cosmetic treatments in dentistry, teeth whitening remains the most popular. A common misconception that many share about teeth whitening is that it’s a swift process that can produce life-long results after spending 1 hour in the dental chair. However, the reality of it is that these methods can sometimes prove to be ineffective as patients can get early relapse due to superficial bleaching

More advanced systems tend to take much longer; often 2 to 4 weeks, but produce results you can maintain for a life time with a simple at-home top up regime.

Enlighten is a 2 week treatment (for 95% of patients) and guarantees a B1 shade for 98% of cases. Patients are given a treatment kit to take home and apply for 2 weeks every night, followed by a final visit to the dentist at the end of that period.  

Enlighten home kit

Follow along as we answer our most asked questions about the Enlighten system that patients are eager to know about. 

    1. Do I have to go to a dentist for this?

Yep. Professional whitening systems have to be done under the supervision of a dentist in the UK.

    2.  Can I buy directly from you?

Although that would be great, Enlighten whitening is a treatment, not just a product. That means a dentist is needed to perform the treatment, take your moulds and have your customised whitening trays made. Also, you need a check up before doing the treatment.

Plus UK law prohibits the selling of professional teeth whitening gels directly to the general public because they can only be provided under the supervision of a dentist. But fear not, head to our Find a Dentist section here (find.enlightensmiles.com) and you’ll find an Enlighten dentist a near you.

    3. How long does it take?

15 days in most cases.

But if you have a complex case then it can take up to 8 weeks. Your dentist will be able to give you an accurate expectation during your initial appointment. 

    4. How white will my teeth go?

98% of cases reach shade B1 and some even go beyond. This is regardless of your age, diet and current teeth shade. A lot of patients go beyond B1, but we can’t guarantee that. 

    5. If I don’t reach shade B1, what shall I do?

Firstly, get in touch with your dentist and let them know your concerns (because they’ll understand your case better than us) and if they will get in touch with us and we’ll do everything we can to make it right.

    6. What is a ‘saturation point’ and what does it mean?

It’s basically the point at which your teeth can’t go any whiter. It varies from person to person and can’t be pinned down to a single shade.

    7. Will my crowns / veneers / composite fillings change colour?

They won’t, sadly. ☹ Only your natural tooth changes colour. For this reason, we recommend that you have your whitening treatment first and then consider to have any cosmetic work done to match up to your newly whitening teeth.

    8. Is it safe?


Unless you’re pregnant or a nursing mum, in that case we would advise you to wait.

    9. Will it hurt?

Honest answer? There will be some sensitivity because of the nature of how teeth are whitened. But we did our best to make sure it’s a rare occurrence and many of our patients experience no sensitivity at all. Some do experience a little sensitivity and around 2% of our patients experience a more intense sensitivity. If you do happen to get any, we promise it will go away once you stop the treatment.

    10. Is it suitable for vegans?


    11. Are your products tested on animals?

Our products are 100% cruelty-free.

    12. How long does it last?

Well, forever really.

All you have to do is keep up with a simple at-home top-up regime. Top up 1 night every 2 months in the first year, 1 night every 3 months in the second year and then 1 night every 6 months from then on.

    13. Do I need to follow a white diet?

Not. At. All.  Who can go without coffee for 2 weeks?

    14. Can I drink red wine/coffee & eat curries, etc.?

Curries, red wine, coffee – you name it, you can have it. And that’s before, during and after treatment. 

And when we say, ‘during treatment’, we mean those 2 weeks of at-home whitening + in-office procedure (but just not whilst the actual trays are in your mouth).

    15. How much is Enlighten whitening?

The price will differ from dentist to dentist and from practice to practice. So, we can’t give you an exact figure, but it tends to be on average between £400-£600 for the complete system (which includes the home & in-office treatment, signature Enlighten trays and toothpastes).

    16. How much is the top-up regime?

This too will differ from dentist to dentist, but the average tends to be between £50-£70 per syringe and should last 12-18 months.

   17. Are there any finance options?

Sure are, a lot of practices now have finance options but make sure to check with your dentist before booking any appointments.

    18. Do I need to keep the gels in the fridge?

Ok, this part is crucial. The gels (the two syringes) must always be kept in the fridge.

Clear syringe-10%Carbamide Peroxide
Blue syringe -16% Carbamide Peroxide

   19 .What happens if I forget to put the gels in the fridge overnight?

Don’t sweat it. If you do happen to accidentally leave your gels out of the fridge for a couple nights, you don’t need to freak out. Refrigerate the gels immediately though, because if they’re out for any longer than 3 nights then you’re going to have to replace the syringe. If that is the case, then call your dentist.

    20. What do I do if I get sensitivity?

There’s a couple things you can try yourself at home; start by trying the desensitising swabs provided in the kit. If you’re not sure how to use them, then give it a click here.

If that doesn’t alleviate the sensitivity much, then put a pea-sized amount of the Tooth Serum in the trays (like you do with the gels) and wear them for about 30 mins at a different time to the whitening.

If you still have sensitivity, then you’ll need to contact your dentist because extreme sensitivity can be caused by an external factor and your dentist is likely to have another treatment option.

    21. When do I use each toothpaste?

Every day.

From 2 weeks before and during the treatment, the Tooth Serum should be used every morning and every night to help with sensitivity and instead of your regular toothpaste. Then once you’ve finished the treatment you switch to using the Evo White toothpaste for the mornings to keep stains away and prolong results and continue using the Tooth Serum at night for micro repair.

The best part is, both toothpastes have all the properties of regular toothpastes on top of their own.


    22. Is there an over the counter (over the counter) alternative?

Nope. Professional teeth whitening is the only thing that will free your teeth from all kinds of stains (intrinsic and extrinsic).

Over the counter whitening products only clean the extrinsic stains off of your teeth or dehydrate them, giving the illusion of whiter teeth.

    23.Does professional whitening affect enamel?

Nope. It’s 100% safe.

    24. Can it damage the teeth if done for longer than 2 weeks?

Not at all. Apart from some sensitivity, no damage can happen (as long as you follow your dentist’s instructions).

    25. How many consecutive nights is it safe to do whitening for?

There isn’t really a time frame preset. After assessing your case your dentist will give you a time frame depending on your case, and as long as you stick to it you’ll be totally fine (and if it makes you feel better some patients with very dark, greyish teeth have been known to whiten up to 6 months at a time).

    26. What is the recommended top-up regime?

1 night every 2 months in your first year, 1 night every 3 months in the second one and then just 1 night every 6 months from then on. 😊

    27. Can I control the shade of my teeth?

Up until B1 (which the shade is we guarantee), you sure can. Once you start the whitening you can do it until you’re happy with the shade or until you reach B1.

Tooth shade guide

    28. I don’t want my teeth to be chalky white, how can I make sure this doesn’t happen?

The beauty of teeth whitening is that your teeth will never look fake. With veneers and crowns they can look unnatural. However, your whitened teeth are still your natural teeth and that’s how they’ll look – natural.

Plus, you can stop the whitening when you’re happy with the shade but bear in mind that during the treatment your teeth can dehydrate and look whiter than they will once they’ve rehydrated a few days later.

    29. I can’t see the dentist the next day after finishing the at-home whitening, what shall I do?

Don’t panic. If this happens to be the case, all you need to do is keep 2 nights worth of gel and do your last two nights before your appointment. Simple.

    30. How do I know the dentist is good at whitening?

Thanks to social media it’s actually pretty easy to figure this one out. 

Head to your chosen dentists Instagram or website and peruse through the cases they’ve posted. It’ll give you a good indication of the kind of results they can achieve.

Our top providers are called ‘Enlighten Regional Centres of Excellence’ and you can request a free consultation from them through our website if there’s a centre around you.

    31. How can I find out where I can get the Enlighten treatment?

All you have to do is click here, type in your postcode and all the closest practices to you that provide Enlighten will show up.

    32. If I have any issues who do I contact?

Speak to your dentist as they should be your first port of call, but if it’s us you want to speak to then send us an email on info@enlightensmiles.com
and we’ll do everything we can to help.


If it’s the Enlighten Teeth Whitening System you want to dig deeper into, then give it a click right here 

And to find an Enlighten whitening expert near you, hit the button below. 


Or if you want to learn more about mini smile makeovers, click here here.


35 Responses

  1. Hi just starting the treatment, can’t believe how much I,m drooling… should this be a concern I’m worried that my saliva will make the treatment less effective?

  2. My dentist recommended to wear the trays for 2 hours everyday but everywhere I have read it says you need to wear them overnight, can you advise please?

    • Hello there, thanks for your message. When dentists recommend using the product during the day instead of night it’s usually for a reason (most commonly they may have diagnosed you as a bruxist, which means you grind your teeth at night). Bruxist should do the treatment during the day when they are fully aware and not grinding their teeth, but if you want more answers, it’s best to check with your dentist about why were you recommended the day treatment instead. Hope this helped!

  3. Hi. I have finished my whitening treatment which was for 2 weeks, my teeth have not gone lighter. They look the same just the stains have gone but not much change in colour.

  4. I missed the crucial info that the syringes should be kept in the fridge!
    Does this degrade the product? The process still seems to have worked, my teeth have lightened, unless I’m a little deluded!
    I also see from comments that the treatment should be done immediately prior to dental treatment. I wasnt made aware of this, my apt to 2 weeks after home treatment.
    I have left over from both syringes- should I repeat process, 2 night clear gel followed by 2 of turquoise gel prior to apt?

  5. Hi – I seem to get extremely thirsty in the night – is it ok to drink water or cordial with the trays in?

    • Hi Clare, thanks for your message. It is best not to drink, but if you must, then make sure to do so through a straw. Hope your whitening is going well! 🙂

  6. I was thinking about going to my dentist for enlighten whitening, but I have weak enamel (which is why my teeth appear yellow). Would whitening weak enamel make my teeth worse? And would it make the translucent tips of my teeth whiter?

    • Hi Sarah, thanks for your comment. Whitening doesn’t affect the strength of the enamel.

      it’s difficult to predict exactly what happens to translucent areas for each patient – but Enlighten tends to be the gel that opacifies these areas more often than not. We hope the answer helps!

  7. Hello. I cant bear having anything in my mouth over night. I don’t really like it during the day, but it is bearable.

    My question is, will the treatment be as effective if I use the gel during the day? If so, what would be better, 1 treatment of 6 hours or two treatments of 4 hours per day?


    • Hi, thanks for your message and so sorry to hear you can’t bear the trays in. Doing the treatment during the day for 2-3 hours should be fine enough, but your treatment will have to be longer, most likely 4 weeks. It’s is best to speak to your dentist and discuss the prospect of a long era treatment during daytime. We are happy to discuss this with your dentist if they need our advice. Hope that helps, thanks!

  8. I used your system 10 years ago and my results were amazing. However, the past year or so I’ve noticed my teeth are beginning to darken again and using the gel doesn’t seem to lift as it did before. Am I safe to use the gel for more than one night to try to bring the original white shade back – mine were so white they were off the chart, so when I say dark, they’re no where near their original colour but definitely not B1 +

  9. Hi there,

    I finish my treatment in 3 days time, but I don’t have my dentist appointment until next week. Is this okay?

    • Hi Michelle,

      Please keep those 3 night worth of gel and do them right before going to the dentist. That should be fine. 🙂

  10. I was actually charged £650 for my first whitening round and this did not include a treatment at the dentist afterwards, and was also charged £250 for two top up syringes. It’s a shame that I was charged the maximum if not over the stated amount without really getting what I paid for.

    • So sorry to hear you are not happy with the prices. There isn’t really a maximum, the prices we give are for guidance from what we heard in the past from practices, however what they charge is completely out of our hands unfortunately 😔. Were your results good?

      • The results have been good, but I didn’t go up to the desired shaded hence why I got two top up syringes. For the top up, can I just use the first 10% syringe for 7 days straight, and then leave the stronger syringe to top up in the future? Or do I do the whole two week course agin. Thanks

        • Hi there. It is best to follow the instructions given by the dentist. If you were given two extra syringes, it suggests that they want you to do a further 2 weeks to ensure that a deep-bleaching system is achieved. Good luck!

  11. Hi,

    I finished my whitening at home 10 days ago but due to lockdown it has been hard to get to the dentist for the last treatment, the next appointment is January what shall I do before I go to the dentist and will this long gap affected my treatment?

    • Hi Ashley, hold back 2 nights till just before office appointment. If you don´t have enough gel left ask your dentist to get in touch with us and we can have a chat on how to sort this out for you.

  12. Hi there, quick question. I know I have to wear these overnight but is there minimum amount of hours I should be wearing my trays at night? I only ask as I work shifts and don’t always get a full 8 hours due to my shift pattern.


  13. I am a 73 year old patient of enlightmentsmiles.On the first consultation my dentist could see and was informed that I had very sensitive teeth but I was informed that there would be very little pain.This process was very painful and gave me headaches.I did not complete the whole process as it was far too painful.I did achieve some lightning of the teeth but could have done that with a much cheaper product.This was done over one year ago and my teeth are just the same colour as last year.The dentist should have not taken me on.I feel that 500 was a waste of money which as a pensioner is a great deal..Very disappointed..

    • Hi Jean. So sorry to hear about this, have you spoken to your dentist about these concerns? Extreme sensitivity is quite rare. Have you used the Tooth Serum and the EvoSeal swabs? Have you had Enlighten trays? And were the gels kept in the fridge?

  14. Hi I have completed the course at my dentist, but I’m not sure if I can ever go back to eating ‘coloured’ or spicy food. So worried about ruining my lovely white teeth
    Please advise

    • Hi Irene,

      We understand your concern, once you’ve achieved such lovely results, you don’t want to waste it. But the easiest thing would be to get one syringes per year from your dentist and keep topping up once every couple of months. This should make sure your teeth stay nice and white and you can eat and drink what you like. 🙂

        • Hi! It’s not ideal, but if you need to take a break due to sensitivity, it’s ok to take a night off.

          • Hi, I have just been reading about having to wear the trays before the final in chair appointment. However, I finished my treatment at home 3 nights ago and my dentist didn’t tell me about saving to wear the night before. What happens at the dentist appointment and is this treatment now compromised? Thank you.

          • Hi Victoria, 3 days should be fine, don’t worry. On the day, you must remember to take your whitening trays with you, and the dentist will apply a different type of gel which you will use whilst in the chair for 40 mins in total. It’s 2 x 20 mins sessions. It’s very easy and straightforward. Hope that helps 🙂

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