Well if the singing on this year’s X Factor UK is not up to scratch, at least the contestants’ teeth will be a distraction.

They, like their predecessors over the past few years, have been put in the very capable hands of dentist Dr Jeremy Hill, who works out of his practice in Ware in Hertfordshire, and his team, who visit the finalists’ house to provide a little taste of A-lister sparkle.

They get the treatment I have received today – the Philips Zoom! whitening system; a session in the surgery followed by hourly top ups at home for a fortnight afterwards.

‘What films do you like?’ asks assistant Purvil. This makes me furrow my brow – do I need a diversion from what I am about to experience?

Transpires this is no ordinary dentist and there is a movie screen on the ceiling. I’ve been used to stained polystyrene tiles up until now, so this is a revelation. Put on the spot, I strangely reply ‘action’ and Purvil cues up Casino Royale.

It is hard to conduct an interview with a mouthful of mould paste so I trot out a couple of questions before I am silenced.

Does Purvil meet new people and start improving their dentistry in his mind’s eye? He ponders as he pours a substance across my top and bottom teeth and it hardens to take an imprint. All the time, he admits! He remembers a dinner early on in the relationship with his partner where he was offering advice to one of her friends about possible improvements to the genetics bestowed upon her. That did not go down too well.

He then inserts a plastic frame in my mouth that makes me look like my growling poodle when she gets angry at next door’s shih tzus. But this is not ‘no pain no gain’ – everything is very comfortable. A cream is spread across my gums by way of protection and then the whitening gel is applied. Yes, it is a hydrogen peroxide (bleach), but in such small doses, it is a safe procedure.

Purvil explains the teeth are like Swiss cheese and red wine and coffee et al stain those holes. This process starts the chain of events to a celebrity grin and then the use of bespoke trays with tiny drops of gel every evening for two weeks will complete the job.

The only side effect I might have is mild sensitivity for 24 hours afterwards. Oh, and burning out people’s retinas with the brightness of my smile.

He presses play on James Bond and then switches on the special lamp, the light from which reacts with the gel during four 15-minute sessions. I lay back and relax.

I have to admit I am thankfully not afraid of the dentist’s chair. The only time I am ever likely to be a model has already happened. A picture of my mouth in a similar grimace graced my now-retired dentist’s room. People often do ask me if I have had my teeth done. Amazing to note my darling Mum lost all her teeth to abscesses and was forced to falsies in her 30s while my Dad has tombstones and does not see a toothbrush as a daily necessity, let alone a desert island luxury item, so I am blessed indeed.

Purvil pops back just as Daniel Craig is romping on the floor with the sexy Latino woman in the red satin dress and I squirm. But all is fine teeth-wise and I settle back into Jeremy’s chair next door for a cup of tea and a quick chat between appointments. It is a chair that has seen many a famous bottom. The Beckhams’ no less. People often ask for Victoria’s smile – one Jeremy is proud of. Other regular requests are a ‘Cheryl Fernandez-Versini’ or a ‘Julia Roberts’.

He is often dealing with horror stories created in foreign dentist practices peddling cheaper but ill-advised procedures with people opting for invasive crown or veneer work when it was never actually necessary.

Jeremy always wanted to be a dentist from his childhood, because of a particularly traumatic experience. He deals with his own teeth now and his easy manner and gentleness stem from not wanting anyone to go through the same.

He has been in the business nearly 30 years and has seen the changing landscape – from a pure healthcare business to the extreme mouthfuls of teeth born across the Atlantic to a mixture of the two now with desires for a more natural white smile, which I am proudly sporting.

And he is the best friend to many; dentists are experts in facial muscles so are well placed to conduct Botox treatments and non-surgical face lifts for which both men and women visit the centre.

They also handle other state-of-the-art activities – from drill-less fillings to invisible braces to sleep apnoea treatments.

For more on the Ware Centre of Dental Excellence and all it offers, log on to www.wcode.co.uk

 

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