Teeth aren’t just there to help us chew food properly – they’re also a vital part of our appearance. I’ve tried to look after mine continuously over the years, even wearing a plastic removable brace retainer at night to keep them straight. But as I have the alignment under control, it’s the whitening I have to keep a check on.
Unfortunately, there are many factors that work against us when it comes to keeping our pearly whites, well, white – coffee, wine, certain foods and habits such as smoking (eurgh!) can all turn an otherwise bright smile into one that’s looking a bit dull. As we grow older, it’s natural for our teeth to become less white as we consume foods and drinks that stain teeth or take up habits like smoking. Thankfully, there are a few simple and easy things that you can do each day to ensure that your smile is gleaming.
1. Regular Dental Check-ups
Regular visits to the dentist can not only help to keep your teeth pearly white, they can also make sure that you recognize the signs of any more serious problems with your teeth early on and ensure that they are fixed before any complications arise. Although many people put off visiting the dentist due to fear and anxiety about being in the dentist’s chair, regular check-ups can help spot problems early on before they start to cause you any pain and discomfort. Going to the dentist at least once a year for a check-up can help you to make sure that you are following the right oral care routine, and you can ask your dentist for advice and tips on how to keep your teeth nice and white. If you have any problems with your teeth, your dentist can refer you to an NYC oral surgeon sooner rather than later.
2. Watch Your Diet
Your health, fitness and weight isn’t the only thing that your diet can affect – the foods that you eat and beverages which you drink can also play a huge part in the health and appearance of your teeth. Darker foods, especially those which are liquid or of a liquid consistency such as gravy, red wine or coffee all have a large potential to stain your teeth. Limiting these foods in your diet or even cutting them out altogether can be hugely beneficial to not only your physical health but your oral health as well. If you don’t want to give them up, making sure that you brush after eating or drinking stain-inducing foods and drinks is the best way to keep your teeth shining.
3. Chewing Gum
Many chewing gum companies now make gums which actually help to clean and whiten your teeth as you chew them. If you are out and about with no access to a toothbrush and toothpaste, chewing dental gum is the next best thing when it comes to making sure that your teeth are clean and healthy. Whenever you’re out and drink coffee, red wine or eat any foods that could stain your teeth, drinking a glass of water and popping a piece of minty dental gum into your mouth can minimize any staining and help to dislodge any food particles from in between your teeth.
Do feel free to share your dental hygiene routine with me in the comments. I for one am a sucker for red wine and green tea, and notice that these two alone are what really attacks the colour of my teeth. Time to find a new tipple!