What does the new European Directive on dental bleaching require?
Because abuse or improper use of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) can have a negative effect on the surface morphology and on the permeability of enamel and dentin, EU Council Directive 2011/84/UE of 20th September 2011 has limited the use of bleaching and whitening products based on hydrogen peroxide.
Only dentists and dental hygienists can use and supply products that contain or release between 0.1% and 6% hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), while the products that contain or release up to 0.1% H2O2 can be freely sold.
Products with H2O2 concentrations of more than 6% are not allowed as cosmetics, but are admitted as medical devices in different European countries.
In addition to limiting the sale of products containing H2O2, the directive has also established that dental bleaching treatments cannot be applied to anyone under 18 years of age.