One of the first things that often attracts one person to another is a beautiful, healthy, white smile, so flashing your pearly whites can help you to meet the man or woman of your dreams, nail a job interview, or even get a discount when you haggle. And since yellowing is a natural part of aging, whiter teeth tend to make people look younger. In other words, a healthy, white smile can be a valuable thing to maintain. Of course, it also helps you to look and feel your best, and keeping your natural teeth in your head is a lot better than having to install false ones for several reasons. So you’ll want to do all you can to keep your teeth healthy and white as long as possible. Here are a few ways to accomplish your goal.
- Watch what you eat. Your diet not only has the ability to affect your physical health, but it can also have a direct impact on your teeth. In fact, your oral health often serves as a sort of litmus test for your overall state of health. And the foods you eat make a huge difference in both. If, for example, your diet consists of the many sugars, acids, and additives found in processed foods and beverages, you’re likely to not only suffer from staining, cavities, and other, more serious oral health concerns, but you might also face health issues related to a high-calorie, low-nutrition diet. So try to stick with natural foods as much as possible, skip foods that are high in sugar, acid, and dyes (especially soda), and consume plenty of dairy products to get the calcium needed for strong, healthy bones. Don’t forget to drink lots of water to help flush away food particles and bacteria that can harm your teeth.
- Just say “no” to tobacco. There are few things more damaging to your smile than tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, and smokeless tobacco (chew). These products can not only cause your teeth to stain terribly (and your breath to smell), but they can also be responsible for gum disease, tooth decay, tooth loss, and various cancers, among other things. If you need help quitting, do an internet search for images of “oral cancer”. Nothing will make you want to quit more.
- Do more than brush. You know you’re supposed to brush after every meal, or if you can’t you should brush twice a day at minimum. But you could be doing a lot more. Every time you stop to brush your teeth you also need to floss and rinse with mouthwash to get at the food particles and bacteria lurking below the gum line. And talk to your doctor about the proper way to brush, as well. If you haven’t had a lesson since the age of three, it might be a good time for a refresher course. You may find that you’ve been doing it wrong.
- Use the right products. If you want to maintain a white smile, you’re going to have to use products designed for whitening. A multi-care toothpaste is a good place to start since it works to remove stains in addition to attacking bacteria and cleaning your mouth. But if that doesn’t brighten your teeth enough, consider strips or other products that whiten over-the-counter, or talk to your dentist about professional whitening procedures, especially if you have sensitive teeth.
- Visit your dentist. No matter how well you care for your teeth, you really need the services offered by a professional dental office like Lighthouse Family Dentistry if you want the best chances of keeping your teeth as healthy and white as they can be. So set up regular appointments for cleaning and check-up and don’t hesitate to call with questions or concerns.