Your smile is one of your many assets that make you attractive to people. And when you know you have a good set of teeth, you just are happy to show it when you smile. But even if you have straight, well-aligned teeth, it’s a deal breaker when they’re yellow and stained.
Even if your teeth are white, with age, they more than likely will become stained over time. Here are some ways to ensure that you continue to flash a nice white smile that you can be confident about.
1. Avoid chewing tobacco and cigarette smoking
We all know that yellow and stained teeth are among the many effects of smoking cigarettes or chewing tobacco. But despite this information as well as the fact that smoking is unhealthy, a lot of people still can’t let go of their sticks. An even sadder reality is that it’s hard and almost impossible to quit smoking for most people.
So, if you really want to maintain a white set of teeth you can be proud of, consider making conscious efforts to start eliminating your tobacco habits.
You think smoking makes you look cool? Well, wait until you see your teeth down the road!
The tar and nicotine in tobacco are the reasons for the teeth stains. When you smoke, these substances settle on your teeth and slowly seep their way into the openings of your enamels. When this happens, your teeth can become brown or yellow on the surface. Nicotine may be a colorless gas. When mixed with oxygen, however, this substance turns into a yellow one.
The more frequent you smoke, the more intense the discoloration on your teeth will be. Although stains due to tobacco are generally removable because they only linger on the teeth’s surface, it’s still best to quit smoking altogether. Besides, quitting is also a healthier option.
2. Know the right way to drink tea
Drinking tea may be a path to a healthier you, but this can cause stains to your teeth too when you’re not mindful of your habits. Especially when you take tea a couple of times each day — whether at home trying to slim down or at work just drinking your tea like water — you’ll have to watch with how the beverage can give your chompers some unpleasant colors.
Have you ever looked inside a white ceramic mug after a tea has been in it for several hours? It’s marked with yellowish stain, right? The same thing can happen to your teeth when you’re a constant tea drinker.
So what do dentists recommend?
The easiest thing to do is to swish some water in your mouth after you finish your cup. Alternatively, you can drink a glass of water after your tea. Water can help wash away the colored liquid that could be left inside your mouth, on your tongue and on your teeth. If you’re a regular tea drinker throughout the day, make sure to drink water in between cups.
You can also use straw to drink your tea. This will help to prevent the liquid from staining your teeth because it won’t touch them nearly as much. Obviously, you don’t want to use straw on a fresh, hot tea, right? So you might want to let it cool a little or turn it into a refreshing glass of iced tea instead.
You may not know it, but using those raw, dried tea leaves to create your drink can cause more stains than those packed in tea bags. Furthermore, some variants such as the white tea are lesser culprits than others. You can lessen the teas’ staining effects though by adding milk to your drinks. But if you really want to ditch tea drinking altogether, a hot solution of water and lemon is a good option.
3. Assess your coffee drinking habits
It may be disappointing to hear that your morning cup of coffee can also contribute to teeth stains. Aside from the pigment of this colored drink, the acidity of coffee also aids in the penetration of the stain into the enamel of your teeth. So should you give up on your daily wake-me-up drink or are there ways around this?
Reducing the amount of coffee while increasing the water, cream or milk in the cup can help in lowering the chance of staining.
It’s also better to schedule your coffee drinking habits in a way that you can brush your teeth or swish some mouthwash immediately afterwards. Otherwise, if you’re the type that sips coffee throughout the day, it’s best to alternate this acidic staining drink with water.
4. Avoid dishes with food coloring ingredients
Any colored dishes are going to have pigments that could stain your teeth. Whether they’re enhanced by artificial coloring or even natural ingredients like saffron and turmeric, their colors can still seep into the microscopic holes of your teeth’s enamel.
There are many cuisines that utilize the use of food coloring to enhance the flavor and/or the appearance of the dishes. So watch what you eat if you care about your pearly whites.
If you’re the person who loves to cook your own meals, make sure to avoid or minimize the use of highly pigmented ingredients that could stain your teeth. Moreover, it’s also good to munch on crunchy vegetables through the day to stimulate saliva generation to aid in cleaning your teeth and mouth.
There are various drinks and foods that you need to avoid too such as white and red wines, soy sauce, cranberry juice, tomato sauce, beets and blueberries. If the item can stain your hands or your clothes, it can definitely stain your teeth.
5. Swish a solution of hydrogen peroxide and water once a week
Some dentists recommend this method as part of your weekly oral hygiene routine. But you shouldn’t overdo it because it can cause sensitivity to your teeth or even cause gum issues. Moreover, take note that swishing this solution can only help keep stains away. If your teeth are already discolored, it’s still best to consult your dentist for feasible solutions.
To make the solution, add a few drops of 2% – 3.5% hydrogen peroxide to a cup of water. Swish the resulting liquid in your mouth for 30 to 60 seconds. Make sure not to swallow the solution. Spit the solution out and rinse.
You can purchase hydrogen peroxide from your local pharmacy, but make sure you don’t get peroxide that is higher than 3.5%.
Alternatively, you can combine two parts of baking soda with one part of hydrogen peroxide to create a whitening paste that you can rub or brush on your teeth to whiten them. You will then have to leave the paste in your mouth for a minute and rinse right after.
6. Consider mouthwashes and toothpaste with anti-stain capabilities
There are a lot of these oral hygiene products available in the market, so you won’t have to worry when you feel lazy and do not feel like making your own diy whitening pastes.
In any case, some of them use hydrogen peroxide as the main ingredient while others may boast about using baking soda.
Other products may be unclear of whether or not they have baking soda and/or hydrogen peroxide. These mouthwashes and toothpaste items are said to work by providing a protective shield around your teeth that will help prevent the pigments from sticking on the surface and penetrating through the enamel.
7. Don’t underestimate the importance of flossing
It’s easy to make brushing your teeth and rinsing with a good mouthwash as part of your daily oral hygiene. But a lot of people tend to skip on the dental flossing part, which is equally essential in maintaining good healthy gums and teeth.
Flossing, especially when done at least once a day, can help remove plaque and food particles in between the teeth where brushing can be ineffective. When these particles stay in your mouth, they can cause the yellowing and browning of the areas in between your teeth. Worse, they can cause tooth decay, and eventually possibly even gum disease, which are even uglier to see when in their advanced stages.
Follow the 7 tips above and you’ll be on your way to bright white beaming smile that you will be more than happy to flash to the world.
If you currently have stained teeth and need to whiten them, you do not need to spend thousands of dollars, there are many ways to whiten your teeth at home and save a ton of money!