11 Top Tips for a Whiter Smile
Teeth whitening treatment has become increasingly popular in recent years and it is now possible to achieve healthy, white teeth at home or in the dental chair but do ensure you are supervised by a registered dentist. Dr Peta Leigh is our teeth whitening expert at elleven and here she offers 11 top tips for achieving a bright white smile…
- Eat your way to whiter teeth – Foods that are firm or crisp are known to help clean teeth as they’re eaten. Apples are considered to be ‘nature’s toothbrush’ and are a great way of cleaning teeth on the go or at lunch time when you are at work and unable to brush your teeth. Other choices include raw carrots, celery, and popcorn. All of these foods are known as ‘detergent’ foods, as the rough edges act as a cleaner to remove bacteria from the teeth. Try to make these the final foods you eat in your meal if you know you won’t be able to brush your teeth right after eating.
- Get a calcium boost – This may come as a surprise to many but cheese is also known for helping to maintain healthy white teeth. Although very fattening, cheese speeds the neutralisation of acid and remineralisation of enamel. Less damage to our enamel equals fewer discolourations. In addition, cheese is also high in calcium which is known for strengthening bones and teeth. For a healthier alternative, milk and yoghurt act in the same way as the cheese, containing calcium and phosphorus which promotes the remineralisation of tooth enamel.
- Wash away the stains – Water is not only essential for overall well-being, it is also vital for great oral health. Water acts as a natural cleaner and has the power to wash away bacteria and residue left on the teeth after eating so be sure to drink a glass of water after every meal.
- White at home – Home whitening is becoming increasingly popular and is the most cost-effective way to whiten your teeth. Advances in technology have made it possible for you to achieve professional results at home under the supervision of your dentist. elleven offers a bespoke service; firstly beginning with a consultation with a whitening expert, who then provides patients with the most effective, state of the art whitening product for them to use at home. With the General Dental Council (GDC) advising that only qualified dental professionals can legally and safely supervise bleaching using these stronger products, you can be sure that you are in safe hands!
- Neutralise acid – Chewing gum is also very beneficial when it comes to maintaining a white smile. Chewing gum helps to clean teeth mechanically by removing debris, and it stimulates production of saliva, which increases your saliva’s ability to neutralise acid and remineralise your enamel, ultimately strengthening teeth. Make sure you choose a sugar-free gum and if it has whitening properties, even better!
- Quit smoking – Lifestyle choices can also influence a natural white smile with smoking being one of the biggest causes of teeth decay and discolouration. The nicotine and tar in the cigarette result in teeth darkening, losing their natural white. Smoking can cause teeth to turn yellow over a very short period of time and years of smoking can even turn teeth brown. To stop this from happening and to improve your overall health, the answer is simple; stop smoking.
- Brush your way to a whiter smile – Your toothbrush can also influence the whiteness in your teeth. Make sure you change your toothbrush or the head of your electric toothbrush at least every two to three months, otherwise you’re just transferring bacteria to your mouth. People also underestimate how flossing can transform a smile.
- The little extras – Flossing removes some of the staining in between teeth, making your smile instantly look whiter. Try to floss several times a week as this will not only improve the health of your gums, you will also notice your smile looking brighter.
- ‘H’ for Hygiene – Regular hygienist appointments at least twice a year will help to preserve a bright white whilst maintaining healthy teeth and gums. The latest technology in dental hygiene uses a special polishing technique which uses high pressure air and water and a specially-formulated powder which removes external stains such as those caused by coffee, tea, red wine and daily living.
- See the light – Dark coloured foods are also notorious for causing discolouration in the naturally white teeth enamel. The best thing to do is try to avoid these foods and drinks such as coffee, balsamic vinegar and red wine, but if you do want to treat yourself, drink a glass of water after as this will help minimise staining.
- The ULTIMATE whitening treatment – The best way to achieve long lasting results is to visit a professional dental clinic that can advise on the best whitening option for you. elleven offers bespoke whitening treatments- either home bleaching or professional in-chair whitening with instant results and reduced sensitivity. Our recommendation is tailor-made to each patient’s life-style, budget and individual needs, ensuring the best results for beautiful, natural white teeth.