The desire for a radiant smile has become widespread in recent years. Numerous teeth whitening kits can be found in stores, promising bright results that help people feel happier and more confident. However, while white teeth may certainly look great, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re healthy. Here’s what you should know about having brilliant pearly whites.
What Does a Healthy Smile Look Like?
Contrary to popular belief, a white smile does not indicate a healthy smile. Natural teeth can have a shade that ranges from yellow to white and be completely healthy. The color is affected by many different factors, including genetics, diet, age, and oral care. Although, aging is one of the main culprits behind yellowing teeth. Over time, your enamel gets thinner and makes the dentin underneath more apparent. And after years of drinking coffee and tea, your teeth develop stains. In short, just because your grin is darker doesn’t mean it’s unhealthy!
How Whitening Products Can Damage Your Smile
It’s no secret that certain over-the-counter whitening products can harm your smile. The ingredients can cause permanent damage to your teeth by eating away at the enamel, making you more susceptible to bacteria and increasing your risk of cavities. And if you have a cracked tooth or cavity before whitening, the chemicals can go deeper than intended and cause significant discomfort. Most people report experiencing increased sensitivity and gum irritation as a side effect of OTC whitening.
Tips for Maintaining a Bright, Healthy Smile
Luckily, there are many safe, natural ways to achieve a brighter smile and prevent further staining.
- Be conscious of the foods and drinks you consume. Try to avoid foods and drinks that are well-known for staining teeth, such as red wine, coffee, and tea. Instead, opt for apples and celery! They’re some of the best foods that help keep your teeth clean.
- Maintain good oral hygiene. Residual foods, drinks, and bacteria can cause staining. Brushing at least twice a day, rinsing after every meal, cleaning your tongue, and flossing once a day are essential practices that help eliminate them.
- Consult with your dentist. Do you have your heart set on teeth whitening? Ask your dentist about professional treatment. Most dental offices offer whitening procedures that are stronger and more rigorously tested for safety and effectiveness.
Don’t be alarmed if your pearly whites aren’t all that white, as healthy teeth are usually off-white or even slightly yellowed. If you’re interested in brightening your smile, always consult with your dentist for proper treatment – your oral health will thank you!
About the Practice
At Flenniken Family Dentistry, we have the skills, techniques, and technologies to help every patient achieve and maintain their most beautiful smile. Our team provides high-quality dental care that’s beyond what’s anywhere else. To keep your grin looking and feeling its absolute best, visit our website or call (717) 249-7777 to schedule a checkup.