Discolored teeth can affect your confidence and how you go about your day-to-day. If you have a yellow or dull smile, don’t lose hope. Several methods exist for whitening your teeth, improving your dental health, and boosting your self-esteem. From natural methods such as oil pulling and eating a healthy diet, to professional cleanings and tooth-whitening gels, read on to discover eight ways to whiten your teeth.
The most important method of keeping your teeth white on this list is making sure you have good dental hygiene. First and foremost, you should be brushing your teeth regularly, in the morning and the evening. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends this twice daily amount, for two minutes a day with fluoride toothpaste for the best results. You can even brush after meals to ensure that you’re doing all you can for a bright smile.
In addition to brushing regularly with a manual or electric toothbrush, add flossing to your dental routine to keep the area between the teeth clean and free of debris.
One natural way of whitening your teeth is a process called oil pulling. This traditional teeth-whitening method uses oils such as sunflower oil or coconut oil to remove bacteria from the mouth. Simply swish around one teaspoon of your chosen oil in your mouth for 15 to 20 minutes before spitting it out, as often as once a day to see results.
A diet rich in fruits and vegetables is not only great for you nutritionally, but can also be beneficial in keeping a white smile. While crunchy vegetables such as carrots and celery can assist in rubbing the plaque build-up off of your teeth, fruits like strawberry and pineapple contain malic acid and the enzyme “bromelain” respectively, which both naturally remove stains.
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Another way of whitening your teeth is to limit your intake of stain-causing drinks such as soda, coffee, and red wine. Since the enamel on your teeth is porous, dark-colored drinks can easily stain, and acidic drinks like coffee can cause erosion. While we aren’t going to tell you to completely give up these beverages, pay attention to how often you indulge, skip the sugars and creams, and be sure to brush your teeth regularly.
One of the best things you can do for your health and your teeth is to avoid tobacco products. Smoking creates plaque and tartar and causes bad breath. Smokers are also three to six times more likely to develop periodontal disease, which, as we know, can be linked to heart disease. Do yourself a favor and quit smoking today.
Try using a whitening toothpaste to give your teeth some extra brightness. Whitening toothpastes have extra ingredients such as small, ADA-approved amounts of hydrogen peroxide and carbamide peroxide, as well as baking soda.
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Using over-the-counter and professional whitening products can give you quick and more drastic results. If you’re using whitening gels, apply the gel directly to the surface of your teeth with a brush and in two weeks you’ll see the final results. Whitening strips are coated with gel and can be applied over your teeth for short periods of time twice a day for up to two weeks. Results from these products last about four months.
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If you want to continue to keep your teeth white, you’re going to need to visit your dentist regularly. Regular exams and cleanings will help you maintain your dental health. The dentist can even do a professional teeth-whitening. Interested in showing off a healthy, white smile this year? Contact Cascadia Dental Specialists and set up an appointment today!
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