Did you know that a bright smile is the secret to a good first impression?
In fact, 48 percent of American adults say that a smile is the most unforgettable feature of a new acquaintance. Also, 37 percent believe that having crooked or stained teeth is less attractive.
The reality is that stained teeth can have a detrimental impact on your confidence. Low confidence affects almost every facet of your life.
In search of a way to cure your yellow woes, you’ll find countless methods of teeth whitening on the net. The problem is that some methods don’t work, while others are outright damaging.
So what do dentists have to say about it?
Here’s a list of 7 tips you can learn to brighten your smile, straight from the professionals. Keep reading to find out what you need to know to get that set of pearly whites you’ve always dreamed of!
If you’ve been googling around, you might’ve stumbled across several DIY whitening methods.
One of the hottest trends on YouTube is charcoal teeth whitening. This method involves using a toothbrush to rub a charcoal-derived substance on your teeth.
The truth is that this method might actually brighten teeth for some people. But it also has the potential to do serious long-term damage to your enamel and erode your teeth. Plus, the American Dental Association hasn’t backed any charcoal teeth whitening products.
Although it seems like a convenient and easy fix, avoid it at all costs. There are better, proven ways to obtain a bright smile.
Whenever you consume anything with sugar, the bacteria in your mouth combines with the sugar to produce acid. This acid actually attacks your teeth for more than 20 minutes, putting a damper on your bright smile.
The bad news is that almost anything you eat has some sugar in it. This includes both vegetables and dairy products as well.
However, foods such as such as cookies, sodas, and candies contain added sugars. Ideally, you want to avoid junk foods for this reason.
It’s best to limit your snacking in general. When you eat a meal, your body produces more saliva, which helps mitigate the effects of the acid on your teeth. Sadly, you won’t get the same benefit when you eat a snack.
Limiting added sugars is important. However, there are certain foods that can help keep your smile brighter.
Vegetables like cauliflower and celery scrub your teeth as you chew. They also help produce the saliva needed to neutralize acids.
Harder cheeses also work well to scrub food particles from your teeth. If you’re lactose intolerant, you should consult with your doctor to ensure you’re getting enough calcium.
When it comes to sweets, you can have strawberries and oranges for dessert. These two fruits work well to polish teeth.
When you go to the grocery store, you’ll notice hundreds of brands of whitening toothpaste. And many of them work—for surface stains, that is.
So, what are surface stains?
Surface stains are extrinsic discolorations found on the outer layer of the tooth. You can develop these stains by drinking beverages like coffee, red wine, and soda.
Most whitening toothpaste contains hydrogen peroxide, which is necessary for whitening. But these kinds of toothpaste contain very low concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, usually between 1% and 1.5%.
Unfortunately, low concentrations won’t whiten beyond the surface. So if you have stains deep inside the tooth, you won’t notice much change after using the toothpaste.
You now know that toothpaste alone won’t get you the results you desire. But that doesn’t mean that brushing harder is the answer either.
Actually, brushing harder doesn’t give you any benefits at all. If you brush too hard, you can cause damage your gums and weaken your enamel.
In order to avoid issues other than discoloration, brush and floss twice a day. Don’t apply too much pressure when you do so.
If you have any questions about brushing, visit your dentist and ask for instructions.
If you want to get a bright smile from the comfort of your home, a trip to the dentist should be your first step.
Nowadays, you can get a take-home tray from the dentist. This comes with plastic models of your teeth and whitening gel.
Unlike whitening strips, the plastic trays are custom made for your teeth. This allows you to get the best results.
Also, the dentist will explain when you can stop treatment and answer any of your questions.
The take-home tray you get from the dentist’s office is safer and more reliable than any DIY method.
Dentists should be your primary choice for getting a bright smile. However, you can still find some good products at your local store as well.
As a whole, store-bought whitening strips and gels work well to whiten teeth. They tend to have higher concentrations of peroxide than whitening toothpaste.
The main issue is that lower quality store-bought products can damage enamel. Additionally, many consumers don’t use these products properly.
If you decide to buy whitening products from the store, make sure they have an American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Acceptance. This ensures that the ADA has determined that the product is effective and safe to use.
Otherwise, steer clear of these products, and only use them as instructed. Also, keep in mind that it’s best to consult your dentist before starting whitening.
There you have it: nothing will get you whiter smile than a trip to the dentist’s office.
Whitening toothpaste can address mild external discoloration. That said, it’s not strong enough for serious stains.
Store-bought methods can get you results as well. However, a dentist knows how to whiten your teeth without compromising their long-term health.
Your best bet is to avoid any DIY methods you see on YouTube and social media. The vast majority of these methods erode your enamel and don’t fix the underlying issue.
If you’re looking to whiten your teeth, fill out a new patient form today. We can’t wait to put a bright smile on your face!