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Wigan woman fined for illegal tooth whitening

Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court
Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court

A Wigan woman has been fined by magistrates after admitting illegal tooth whitening.


Christie McCarrick, of Orchid Hair Tanning and Beauty in Beech Hill, pleaded guilty to offering an illegal service and was ordered to pay a total of £2,400 at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates' Court.

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Investigations into the Beech Hill Avenue venue began after a customer suffered burnt gums and sensitive teeth following a procedure there last December.

In March 2018 McCarrick told undercover investigators from the General Dental Council (GDC) she was prepared to carry out tooth whitening illegally.

The law says the treatment can only be performed by a dentist or a dental therapist, dental hygienist or a clinical dental technician working to the prescription of a dentist.

McCarrick was fined £200 and also left to pay a £30 victim's surcharge and the GDC's legal costs.

Katie Spears, head of illegal practice at the GDC, said: “Our primary purpose at the GDC is to protect the public from harm.

"Illegal tooth whitening represents a real risk as those who carry it out are neither qualified to assess a patient’s suitability for the treatment nor are they able to intervene should an emergency arise.

"The GDC takes reports of the illegal practice of dentistry very seriously and, where appropriate, will prosecute in the criminal courts.”

The organisation said anyone considering tooth whitening can check the register of dental professionals on the GDC’s website to ensure the individual offering the treatment is qualified to do so.

Visit gdc-uk.org to find out more.