When you look in the mirror and smile, do you cringe because your teeth aren’t as white as you think they should be? It’s true that an adult’s teeth are not going to be as white or bright as a child’s teeth, in most cases. Also, if you are wearing dark-colored lipstick, you will often notice that your teeth look more yellow or gray than you’d like them to. Some people have stains on their teeth from coffee, cigarettes, and other substances that can cause yellowing, too. If you are not happy with the color of your smile, there are some things you can do to get whiter, brighter teeth.
If you smoke, even if you brush your teeth frequently, you are going to see some staining on your teeth. While brushing, flossing, and frequent dental cleanings will help, nothing will stop the staining as effectively as quitting smoking. Whether you smoke cigarettes, a pipe, cigars, or anything else, it’s very likely affecting your teeth and your gums.
It can be hard to quit smoking, and it’s possible that you’ve tried without much success. Talk to your physician about ways that you might have better luck quitting. Whether it’s a patch, e-cigarettes, medications, hypnosis, or something else, there is probably something out there that will help you overcome this habit.
Drink Less Coffee, Tea, and Red Wine
In the quest for brighter teeth, you might have noticed that you drink a lot of stain-producing beverages. The most notorious are coffee, tea, and red wine. If you are thinking that there’s no way you will give up these substances, that’s okay; you just need to change the way you drink them. First, intersperse sips of your dark-colored beverages with plain water. This will wash away some of the staining agents before they can set in. Secondly, plan on consuming your beverage at one time, then brush your teeth. Don’t nurse a cup of coffee or a glass of wine for hours.
Have Good Oral Hygiene
Brushing twice daily, flossing every night, and seeing your dentist regularly can go a long way toward giving you a whiter smile and brighter teeth. Brushing frequently makes it less likely that debris will sit on your teeth long enough to stain them. Flossing removes food debris from between the teeth. Both of these also help prevent cavities, which can cause further discoloration. Finally, your dental hygienist will remove stains when he or she polishes your teeth at the end of a cleaning. Having this done twice per year keeps your teeth looking good in between visits.
Look Into Teeth Whitening
If the above measures don’t work to give you brighter teeth, it might be time to look into the various methods of teeth whitening. You can use whitening toothpaste or gel that you find in your local pharmacy. You can also buy bleaching trays, though these can cause some sensitivity and gum irritation. You can also talk to your dentist about having custom-made trays fabricated.
If you aren’t happy with the way your smile look, give us a call to schedule a consultation appointment. We can talk to you about ways to achieve straighter, whiter, or brighter teeth.
Creative Commons image by Steve Wilson.