Whiter, brighter teeth aren’t just about cosmetics. Knowing your smile looks its best helps you feel more confident in every area of your life, helping you look more attractive, healthier, more successful and even younger. At Couture Smiles Dental Group, we offer state-of-the-art whitening solutions to make getting that beautiful, healthy smile as easy as possible. Of course, once your teeth look their best, you want to do all you can to keep them that way. These six tips are all you need to extend the results of your whitening treatment so you can enjoy those benefits for as long as possible.
1. Have your teeth cleaned first
Teeth whitening products work by penetrating the tooth surface to gently lift and remove stubborn stains that cause yellowing and dinginess. But to reach that deeper layer, your tooth surface needs to be as clean as possible. Having your teeth cleaned before your whitening treatment ensures plaque and tartar are removed, so the whitening agent can penetrate not only more deeply, but also more consistently, for a better overall result — and whitening that lasts longer, too.
2. Hack your brushing habits
It may not seem like brushing and flossing can do much to preserve your whiter smile, but actually, poor oral hygiene is a major cause of dull, dingy teeth. To get the best results, choose a whitening toothpaste (with fluoride) and add a whitening rinse. Then use a soft brush to gently clean all the surfaces of each tooth, eliminating plaque that can cause discoloration as well as cavities. Make sure to get the areas between teeth and at your gum line — areas where plaque is most likely to hide. Then follow up with floss. Both manual and electric brushes are fine; just pick the style you like most. Aim to brush for 2 minutes, which is about the time it takes to make sure all the surfaces are properly cleaned. Not sure if you’re using the right brushing technique? Ask your hygienist to demonstrate during your next office visit.
3. Schedule regular cleaning appointments (and keep them)
Brushing and flossing are super important when it comes to maintaining the results of your professional whitening treatment, and so is professional cleaning. At our office, our hygienists use special tools and techniques to get rid of stubborn tartar deposits and gently buff away superficial discoloration, so your teeth stay shiny and bright. It may be tempting to skip a cleaning appointment, especially when your schedule is busy. But doing so not only means your whitening results might not last as long; it also means you’re increasing your risks for cavities and gum disease, too. Most cleanings take under an hour, so set aside the time and commit to get a more beautiful (and healthier) smile.
4. Be mindful of what you’re eating
A lot of tooth discoloration is caused by what we eat and drink. The biggest culprits: Foods and drinks with deep or dark colors, like coffee and tea, red wine, lots of fruit juices or punches, dark berries, and foods with added natural and artificial colors. Foods and drinks that are high in acids can also increase your risk for discoloration, because they temporarily weaken the enamel coating on your teeth, making it easier for pigments to penetrate and cause stains. You can’t eliminate all the foods that can cause discoloration — the list includes lots of healthy fruits and vegetables. But you can limit your consumption of unhealthy options that have dyes and colorings in them. And you can also skip the tobacco products, a leading cause of tooth yellowing (not to mention gum disease and tooth loss).
5. Rinse after meals (and some beverages, too)
You can also help reduce the risk of staining from any type of food by rinsing well after eating or drinking. Don’t brush right afterward; eating and drinking also causes your tooth enamel to soften a bit, typically for about a half-hour or so. Brushing during that time can damage your enamel and make it easier for teeth to become stained. Instead, rinse and swish well to dislodge food particles and pigments from all your tooth surfaces.
6. Use a take-home kit
In-office teeth whitening provides the most dramatic results in the least amount of time (just one visit is). But at Couture Smiles Dental Group, we also offer take-home whitening kits. These kits make it really easy and convenient to maintain the results of your professional treatment longer, so you can extend the time between your in-office treatments.
At Couture Smiles Dental Group, we want all our patients to have beautiful, confident, sexier smiles. If you’re ready to tap into all the benefits that a whiter, brighter smile can offer, contact the practice and schedule your whitening appointment today.