Does your smile leave something to be desired. Namely, a little more brightness or a little more shine? Maybe you even want a lot more brightness. Here of some very helpful and very simple ways you can bring a shine to your smile.
Basic Oral Care
If you want your smile to be as bright as it is after a professional cleaning. Then taking the time and a little effort to keep up that shine is simple: use a whitening toothpaste at least twice a day.
Usually your standard whitening toothpaste doesn't contain very much of the chief whitening ingredient: peroxide. That is not to say you should add more to your toothpaste, after all, peroxide in large quantities can strip the enamel from your tooth and leave them even more vulnerable to stains and tooth decay.
However, you can augment the already whitening and brightening action of your regular whitening toothpaste with the right toothbrush. However, you can augment this whitening power by using an electric toothbrush.
Using a sonic toothbrush can yield amazing results when coupled with your favorite whitening toothpaste. The sonic variety of toothbrush knocks loose a lot of the particles that can lead to stains on your teeth. Better yet, any superficial stains already beginning to set are removed by this process.
Mouthwash is very important. It gets to the spots that your toothbrush, and even dental floss, can miss. Those dark corners of the mouth. Use a whitening rinse to augment your toothbrush and whitening toothpaste. Try to avoid the alcohol containing mouthwashes. This is because the alcohol content can leave your mouth dried out and vulnerable to bacteria.
Some mouthwashes containing ceylpyridinium chloride or CPC. CPC, in the absence of coloring or dyes can actually draw out the stains in your teeth. However, if that same mouthwash contains these dyes and food coloring agents, it can actually set these colors into your teeth. Clear, alcohol free mouthwash with CPC is the best to augment your daily oral hygienic regimen and keep your teeth pearly white.
Watch What You Put In Your Mouth.
Chewing gum with xylitol helps stimulate the salivary glands. Human saliva helps to repair the minute pits that can develop through bacterial action. Saliva actually contains enzymes that break down sugar and this can help to clear away the extra food particles that the act of chewing gum begins to remove. Of course, this is pointless if you choose a highly sugared chewing gum.
Certain foods will actually help clean your teeth. Crisp fruits will aid in removing stains from your teeth. Oddly enough, the strawberry has some amazing tooth whitening properties. This is because the common strawberry contains significant amounts of malic acid; a chemical known to act as an astringent that cleans the teeth and removes many surface stains. If you combine this malic acid with common baking soda, you can unleash some rather powerful tooth whitening agents.
Although perhaps it is not on par with many of the profession teeth whitening products, it still remains a very powerful yet inexpensive way to whiten teeth. It is of course important to note that you should not be over zealous with this method. Malic acid is still just that; an acid. It will, if used to often, wear the enamel right off of your teeth, leave them vulnerable to more stains, and even tooth decay.
To create this homemade variety of teeth whitening agent, you need only crush the strawberries into a mushy pulp and combine the pulpy mash with baking soda until the mixture is well blended. Always use a soft toothbrush with this method, as a harder toothbrush may damage your enamel. You should never use a hard toothbrush anyway; a soft to medium toothbrush works just as well and does not strip the enamel from your teeth as quickly.
The typical safe amount of time to leave the paste on your teeth, for maximum results yet remaining safe, is around 5 minutes. Many dentists, at least most, will tell you not to use this more than twice a week. If any discomfort or sensitivity arises, you should discontinue this or any other whitening method, immediately.
However, there are some fruits that you may want to avoid, or at least rinse your mouth out shortly after enjoying them. Those fruits contain acids. Acid usually in the form of citric acid. Leaving these acids on your teeth can help wear down the enamel. Fruits to be wary of, at least where your enamel is concerned, are the lemon, the lime, and even the grapefruit and some kinds of oranges.
Swishing your mouth out with water is also an important safety precaution when drinking tea, colas, and coffee. This will remove the lingering amounts of these liquids that can cause stained teeth, and enamel damage. Your best bet is to make sure you rinse your mouth out after every meal that you cannot brush after.
At Home Whiteners: Stronger than Store Bought Solutions?
A little known fact about teeth: they have pores. Very much like the surface of your skin, the enamel of your teeth have pores. These are mostly designed for transporting minerals and nutrients. Just like the pores of your skin, they can become blocked. Stains, over time, can add a nasty sort of veneer to the surface of the teeth and this effectively blocks some of the natural mineral exchange.
Over the counter, or nonprescription, tooth whitening, gels and other systems can help to remove this clogging coat of veneer. This is usually carried out with peroxide. Many tooth whitening systems have a rather small range of peroxide percentages. Typically, they range from 7 percent to nine percent.
However, the standard homemade variety of whitening systems can augment and even surpass the effects of over the counter solutions. As stated above: caution is needed. Don't use these systems more than twice a week or you may end up doing more damage to your enamel than good.
They penetrate deeply into the pores and the oxygen expands, thus pushing out the stains. A simple solution of baking soda and peroxide can work wonders far beyond many of the more expensive whitening systems you may find in stores.
However, you must be careful not to put the paste directly onto the gums. This can hurt and cause damage to the gums if you have a moderate to sever case of gum disease. The more advanced the gum disease, the more the damage. Always start out with a weaker percentage of peroxide to be sure you are not damaging the delicate connective tissue.
Keeping up with these simple ways to whiten your teeth will help you maintain a bright smile and a sense of self-confidence. You don't have to spend hundreds of dollars on costly and chemical laden solutions for your teeth whitening needs. As with any medical treatment, always consult your dentist. With methods that may damage your gums, they will help you keep safe and keep that smile bright.