Patient Education

Get Whiter Teeth This New Year

One of the few resolutions you hear about when the new year comes around is getting whiter teeth. Although living a healthier lifestyle and setting goals is a great way to start off 2017, don’t forget that there are ways to have healthier teeth and you can do plenty of things to make your smile as strong and white as possible. Here are a few ways we recommend you brighten your smile this new year.

First, you should know what is actually causing the staining and yellowing of your teeth. Drinking a large amount of coffee and tea, smoking cigarettes, eating acidic foods, ingesting fluoride, and aging are all factors in thinning your enamel and yellowing your teeth. Of course, you can’t exactly avoid aging or fluoride but you can definitely limit your intake of the other causes, which brings us to our first tip.

Avoid smoking cigarettes, cut down on the coffee and tea, and generally work on improving your oral health. Brush your teeth with a whitening paste after eating and keep your regularly scheduled dental cleaning appointments.

Another tip is to use lemon juice. Just as Jan used lemon in the Brady Bunch to lighten her freckles, the acidic fruit can do the same for your teeth.  Although acidic substances are on our list of items that cause yellowing, using a little without aggression or prolonged use will do little harm and can actually benefit your teeth’s brightness. Just be sure to rinse with water after use to avoid the acid clinging to your teeth and stripping the enamel.

There are also plenty of gels, pens, and trays available over-the-counter that advertise quick teeth whitening. While these are all great options, our favorite (and the most effect) way to whiten teeth is with in-office or at-home whitening procedures given by your dentist. After all, no one knows your teeth like your dentist.

At our office, we offer both options. The in-office procedure, the Philips Zoom Whitening, involves wearing a tray filled with peroxide gel for 3 fifteen-minute cycles, and is available as a take-home option as well. If you’re looking for something not quite as intense or have tooth sensitivity, another great choice is the Sheer White at-home whitening kit. This includes five days’ worth of flexible gel strips that mold to your teeth and whiten as you wear them. Whichever route you choose, it is recommended that you have a regular dental cleaning first to get your teeth ready for the whitening process.

If you’re having trouble deciding which choice is the best for you, give us a call and let us help you decide!

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