Picture this: you’ve just received teeth whitening to brighten your smile. Wonderful! You now have a beautiful smile that you can be proud to show to your colleagues at work, your family, and your friends. But there’s one thought lingering in the back of your mind: how do I keep my teeth looking their best?
Regardless of whether you receive professional teeth whitening or choose to use do-it-yourself methods at home, the effects of this treatment aren’t permanent. Eventually, you’ll need to do it again to touch up your smile.
But there are certain measures you can take to help ensure that it lasts as long as possible, and that includes avoiding or consuming less of certain food and drinks that leave behind stains.
For more information about teeth whitening in Legacy, contact our local dental practice when you can!
What is Teeth Whitening?
Teeth whitening is a very popular cosmetic treatment designed to enhance the aesthetic appearance of your smile. To do this, a special bleaching agent is applied to your teeth – hydrogen peroxide or hydrogen carbamide are the two substances that are used to do this because they’re able to safely penetrate your enamel and dentin and remove stains.
There are two main avenues that you can travel down to improve your smile: in-office or at-home whitening.
When you come in to receive this process from a dentist near you, your appointment will begin with a physical evaluation of your teeth and gums. Your dentist may also decide to take some x-rays too. This is done so that they can understand the current state of your oral health.
Your mouth will be thoroughly cleaned before the whitening agent is applied to your smile. You’ll be given a specific amount so that you don’t receive any more than you need to since excess bleach can damage your enamel. This remains on your teeth for about a minute or so before it’s wiped off and applied once again. A UV light is employed to activate the whitening processes. All of this is repeated until your teeth resemble the shade of white that you desire.
All in all, your treatment can be done in a single 60-minute visit. If you have any questions or experience any sensitivity and require further care to be more comfortable, be sure to let your dentist know.
Although most (if not all) dentists recommend professional whitening, this process can be a bit costly. Luckily, there are alternative methods you can turn to. Some of the best DIY treatments include:
- Whitening strips, trays, and toothpaste.
- Take-home kits. These are becoming more readily available at local dental clinics. A predetermined amount of bleach and plastic trays are provided to you.
- Brushing with a mix of baking soda and toothpaste.
- Rubbing lemon peels on your smile.
- Brushing and flossing after each meal! This is arguably the best and easiest way to keep your teeth healthy as well as bright.
- Coming in for dental cleanings.
With all that said, be sure to do your research before committing to anything. Speak with your dentist in Legacy too; they’ll be able to help you identify the best way forward based on your lifestyle, preferences, and budget.
Maintaining the Appearance of Your Smile
One of the biggest things that can lead to discoloration when it comes to our teeth is the foods we eat and what we drink. If you want the results of your teeth whitening to last as long as possible, altering your diet slightly can definitely help with that.
Listed below are the 5 most notorious culprits that can darken your smile over time:
1. Tea and coffee
Even though many of us rely on coffee to get us through early mornings and busy workdays, consuming a lot of coffee can stain your teeth just like it stains the rim of your favorite mug. Extra flavorings and syrups contribute to this too. So, as much as you may not want to hear this, perhaps you should consider taking a break from those pumpkin spice lattes for a short while.
Tea, especially bleach teas, are much the same. To help reduce stains from either beverage, drink a glass of water afterward. This washes bacteria from your mouth that lead to discoloration.
Especially red! But white wine is much the same. Along the same lines as coffee and tea, drink water after you have your glass of wine to help reduce the appearance of stains.
Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, oh my! However, it’s not just berries that can stain your smile. Fruits that are especially acidic like lemons, limes, and oranges can leave them behind too. Juices like grape and cranberry juice, even tomato juice, have the same effect.
Soy sauce, gravy, and tomato sauce are just three of the most prominent examples. So, like your coffee, maybe skip eating Italian for a bit.
Beer is much like wine, coffee, and tea. This drink will leave brownish-yellow tints on your teeth and will grow darker and more prominent over time the more you consume it.
Are you looking to receive convenient treatment for teeth whitening near you? At Township Dental Wellness, we’ve got you covered! Your smile will be glowing like a string of pearls in no time! Call, come in, or go to our website to book an initial consultation. We look forward to seeing you!