With time—and certain dietary choices—our teeth naturally begin to lose their luster. While a professional teeth whitening treatment with a knowledgeable cosmetic dentist is the safest and most effective way to restore a vibrant, healthy looking smile, there are things you can do in your daily life to preserve and protect a bright smile.
Your Diet and a Healthy, Bright Smile
There are a number of tips and tools to whiten your smile, and many of them revolve around your diet:
- Add more raw fruits and vegetables; fresh, crunchy foods are good for your teeth as well as your overall health
- Eat more nuts; like veggies and fruit, nuts can help keep your teeth clean and also contain nutrients beneficial to your general health
- Enjoy the occasional dairy product; milk and cheese not only contribute to strong bones, but they help protect your teeth from the harmful effects of other foods and drinks
- Cut back on the consumption of dark, acidic beverages like wine, coffee and tea, which can erode enamel and stain teeth
- Avoid sugary beverages like juice, soda and sports drinks, which also contribute to decay and discoloration of the teeth
- Limit dark foods like marinara sauce, soy sauce and curries, which can progressively stain teeth
If you can’t brush your teeth soon after a meal or consuming dark, acidic beverages, rinse your mouth with water. A quick swish and rinse helps minimize the harmful residue left behind by other foods and drinks.
Your Dental Health and White Teeth
The best and most simple thing you can do to maintain a healthy, white smile is to practice good dental health, which includes brushing your teeth at least twice daily and visiting your dentist for regular checkups and thorough teeth cleanings. Other dental health tips that can help you preserve a vibrant smile include:
- Brush your teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush; medium and hard bristles can damage the enamel of your teeth
- Floss at least once daily, and floss thoroughly to where your teeth meet your gums; this is where the plaque that contributes to tooth decay and discolored teeth tends to take root
- Rinse with water or mouthwash following brushing and flossing to remove any lingering food particles
- If you can’t brush or rinse immediately after eating, chew a sugar-free gum; this helps your mouth produce saliva and limit the harmful effects of what you just consumed
And, as the Huffington Post article “7 Natural Tips for Whiter Teeth” points out, it’s advisable to avoid home remedies like baking soda and apple cider vinegar. These solutions can ultimately do more harm than good.
Your Dentist and Teeth Whitening
Visiting an experienced dentist for teeth whitening ensures a uniformly bright, natural-looking smile.
It also allows your dentist to assess your dental health. Any problems can be treated and your dentist can determine whether teeth whitening is the best solution for your unique needs.
To learn more about your teeth whitening options, please contact Dr. Dan Matthews online or call our dental office at 512-520-0606. Dr. Matthews welcomes patients from the greater Austin, Texas, area.