If you’ve just whitened your teeth, either professionally or with over-the-counter products, you are probably proud of your new smile. After all, white teeth can improve your self-esteem, make you look younger and even help you get a promotion at work. However, while you are basking in the brilliance of your recently whitened smile, it is important to stay on guard against the elements and habits that yellowed your teeth in the first place. Unless you’ve invested in porcelain veneers, your teeth whitening treatment is not permanent. But you can certainly prolong your results if you know how to defend them going forward.
First and foremost, you must identify the staining culprits in your life. The following are things you should consider:
- Dark Drinks
- Unless you are faithful to use a straw, every time you consume a beverage you are bathing your teeth in the chosen liquid. It should come to no surprise that dark sodas, coffee, red wine and black tea can cause a dingy or discolored smile. To protect yourself against dark-colored beverages, use a straw or rinse with water afterwards.
- Certain Sauces
- You may not consider much about your sauce, but just like drinks, your go-to barbeque sauce or ketchup obsession could be staining your teeth. Try to keep your “saucy” habit in moderation and brush your teeth well after eating.
- Tobacco Use
- Whether you smoke or chew tobacco, you’re inviting a major threat to your smile appearance and oral health when you engage in the habit. Most smokers have a very difficult time retaining white teeth, and the health risks of tobacco use are even more dangerous. Go ahead and kick the habit and let your teeth whitening treatment last this time!
- Poor Oral Hygiene
- Last but not least, your poor brushing habits could be sabotaging your teeth whitening efforts. The bacteria, plaque and food debris that accumulates each day must be removed if you want to avoid unsightly staining.
- Enamel Erosion
- Do you consume energy drinks, acidic foods or sodas on a regular basis? If you do, you may find that your tooth enamel is wearing away or deteriorating as a result. Not only may you experience teeth sensitivity, but you may find that your teeth look more yellow than white. This is because the outer enamel layer of a tooth is white and the next layer (dentin) has a more yellow tint. While your enamel can thin due to the natural aging process, you can prevent significant erosion by avoiding acidic foods and drinks.
Do you need help defending your white smile? Perhaps you want to schedule a teeth whitening session or learn about a more permanent solution for whiter teeth, such as composite bonding or veneers. Call Park South Dentistry today – we offer excellence in cosmetic dentistry!