Many people wish they had a , and with so much information out there, it can be hard to know what method works best. Many of our patients are able to whiten their teeth considerably by improving their oral health or investing in cosmetic dentistry. If you’re looking for whiter teeth, here’s what you need to know.
Brush and Floss Your Teeth
Plaque is an invisible film of bacteria that lives on your teeth. Over time, plaque buildup can increase your risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Hardened plaque (tartar) can also give your teeth a yellow or brown-colored tinge. One of the best ways to protect your white smile is to brush twice a day and floss once daily.
Most dentists agree that you’ll need to brush your teeth for at least 2 minutes at a time. If we still find plenty of plaque and tartar on your teeth, we may recommend adding a fluoride mouthwash to your oral hygiene routine.
Visit the Dentist
Brushing and flossing your teeth at home is important, but it isn’t enough to fully protect oral health. You’ll also need to make sure you schedule a teeth cleaning with our office to remove plaque and tartar from teeth.
Only a dental professional will be able to remove tartar from teeth. If you have a lot of tartar buildup, your smile will look slightly whiter after your appointment. Your dental hygienist will use a tool called a scaler to gently scrape plaque and tartar from teeth.
Avoid Consuming Things that Stain Your Teeth
If you want to keep a naturally white smile, you’ll want to limit certain foods and drinks. Coffee is one of the biggest culprits behind tooth discoloration. While we understand that coffee provides that much-needed boost of energy as you’re trying to get out the door, it can also stain teeth over time.
Even if you don’t stop drinking coffee completely, you might want to cut down on how much you drink each day. Other foods that include wine, tea, tomato sauce, and berries. Be aware that lots of alcoholic drinks also stain your teeth as well as smoking.
Keep Enamel Strong
Underneath your tooth enamel is a brownish layer called dentin. If your natural enamel wears away, the dentin is exposed, which can lead to a discolored or stained appearance. It’s important to preserve your natural tooth enamel, as once it’s gone, you can’t get it back.
A good oral hygiene routine and regular dental visits can help you keep your enamel intact. Limiting high sugar/acidic foods and drinks should help your teeth remain whiter longer and help keep your enamel strong too.
Avoid Over-the-Counter Options
While there are plenty of over-the-counter options for teeth whitening, such as whitening strips or charcoal toothpastes, many of these products can actually damage your teeth in the long run.
Certain natural remedies, like using lemon juice and baking soda, can strip away the enamel on your teeth, weakening them and possibly causing tooth sensitivity. Ask our teeth whitening dentist for your options if you’re interested in whitening your teeth.
Consult a Professional
Interested in teeth whitening at home? Our dentist may recommend custom teeth whitening trays to help you achieve a whiter smile. First, we’ll need to take impressions of your teeth to send to the lab. When you come back for your second appointment, your teeth whitening tray will be ready.
Our teeth whitening dentist may slightly adjust the fit of your tray so it fits comfortably. We also offer Zoom teeth whitening, which is done in our office. Zoom teeth whitening is a process where a dentist applies a special whitening gel to your teeth then that works in conjunction with a Zoom light to break down the stains and fix discoloration.
Ask about Cosmetic Dentistry
Each smile is different. If you only need to improve the shade of one tooth, our dentist may recommend dental crowns or porcelain veneers. We use CEREC (Chairside Economic Restorations of Esthetic Ceramics) technology, which means we’ll be able to create and place your new dental crown in one appointment.
However, our dentist may recommend porcelain veneers to save as much natural tooth structure as possible. Veneers are wafer-thin porcelain shells we bond to the fronts of your teeth that show when you smile or talk.
Ready to Make an Appointment?
Our teeth whitening dentist at Plymouth Dentistry is dedicated to helping patients achieve their best smiles through Zoom teeth whitening and other cosmetic dentistry services. To schedule an appointment with our team, call our office at (734) 459-7110.
This blog post has been updated.