Category Archives: teeth whitening

Tips for Whiter (and Healthier!) Teeth

Beautiful girl is showing her white teeth after teeth whiteningWhite, healthy teeth is not an oxymoron—or at least it shouldn’t be! That’s the good news, though it does come with a note of caution. Just type “whiten teeth,” into an internet search browser and pages of promises pop up, all with natural solutions that instantaneously whiten teeth. However, all those promises should come with a note of caution. Many of these solutions can wear down the enamel and cause short- and long-term damage to teeth. That’s why we put together a list of tips to get white teeth without risking the health of your teeth.

Limit those yellowing foods and drinks.

Some of our favorite food and drinks, such as blackberries (or any dark berries), coffee, and soda, are the biggest culprits in yellow teeth. Limit how much you consume; when you do indulge, drink water and brush your teeth as soon as you can (especially after a soda, which is a proven source of cavities).

Give up tobacco.

There are a lot of good reasons to stop smoking or chewing tobacco, both funds (saving money!) and health wise. Quitting smoking decreases the risk for many health problems, and it also eliminates one of the chief causes of yellow teeth. The nicotine in tobacco is colorless until it comes in contact with oxygen, causing your teeth to yellow. In addition, the tar in tobacco causes dark stains that can be difficult to remove. To get whiter teeth, quit tobacco use (these tips for quitting smoking can help) and remove the source of yellow teeth.

Brush and floss twice a day.

Regular oral hygiene plays a significant role in keeping teeth healthy AND white. Brush teeth at least twice a day, and floss before or after brushing; the order doesn’t matter, as long as flossing is done. To get rid of surface stains, purchase a whitening toothpaste; look for the American Dental Association seal of approval to buy a reputable and effective product.

Know that dental work may not cooperate.

Fillings, crowns, caps, and other dental work do not whiten as other normal teeth do. If the teeth are different colors (such as brown and yellow), the teeth might whiten to different shades as well. Likewise, teeth discolored by medications or an injury may not whiten (or may whiten less) than normal teeth.

Be careful about natural and over-the-counter whitening products.

It can be really tempting to purchase any of the numerous whitening trays or rinses. Be careful. Using teeth whitening products too much or outside of the label can damage your teeth and gums or lead to injuries, such as chemical burns or loss of enamel. Trays do not always fit properly, applying the product to other areas of the mouth.

Natural home remedies come with a similar disclaimer; certain household products, especially acidic ones, can wear down the enamel in your mouth.  Be cautious when mixing or applying these remedies that can do more harm than good.

Talk to your dentist.

The right dentist is a trusted professional, which is precisely why you should consult your dentist before starting any whitening program (even natural whitening remedies). Your dentist can give you advice on what to do about dental work, whitening products that won’t damage the enamel, and treat and repair any dental problems prior to whitening (for example, cavities should be filled before using a whitening product).

Your Teeth Whitening Questions Answered

Beautiful girl is showing her white teeth after teeth whiteningWhiter teeth is one of the hottest web (and pharmacy!) searches, but clicking on one of those articles can be a decision fraught with serious consequences for your teeth IF you don’t do it safely. Here’s the answer on how to whiten your teeth safely, as well as the answers to any of your other questions about teeth whitening.

Are teeth whitening products permanent?

Teeth whitening is not permanent. Teeth whitening temporarily removes stains, which is why you should look for a product that maintains the whitening. It is important to note that fillings, crowns, and other dental work does not whiten.

What teeth whitening products are safe?

There are two ways to make sure that you are using a safe teeth whitening product, and both involve relying on the pros. If you are searching for an over-the-counter product (hopefully after scheduling a thorough exam with your dentist and getting their approval), look for the American Dental Association seal of approval. For a one-stop shop alternative, schedule an exam at your dentist’s office and discuss your options with your dentist. Your dentist may have a safe teeth whitening product you can purchase on-site (and use with their approval and under their care safely).

What are the negative side effects of teeth whitening?

At home remedies and over-the-counter teeth whitening products may seem like a good idea, but there is a buyer beware clause. Teeth whitening products can cause tooth sensitivity, penetrate tooth decay, and unevenly whiten.

Why should I contact a dentist before teeth whitening?

There are several reasons to schedule a dentist appointment before you start whitening your teeth. If you have any cavities, the cavities should be treated before tooth whitening. Your dentist can recommend a safe teeth whitening product that won’t damage your teeth and is ideal for your specific teeth.

How does teeth whitening work?

How your teeth whitening product works depends on what you use; make sure you look for the ADA seal of approval on the product.

We can tell you how the whitening trays we recommend work; after a full dentist exam, you receive custom-made whitening trays for upper and lower teeth and a two-week supply of whitening gel. At your next exam, you receive two tubes of touch-up whitening gel that maintains your white teeth. Have any other questions? Ask us.