How to maintain a white smile

Did you know that teeth are naturally an off-white color, and will yellow with age? However, everybody wants to have a pearly white smile! You can have your teeth whitened at the dentist, but it takes work to keep them white!

Here are some tips to maintain that white smile

Take proper care of your teeth

At a minimum, you should be brushing twice a day, flossing once a day, and using an antiseptic mouthwash, and not just for whitening purposes! Taking proper care of your teeth will go a very long way towards staving off teeth staining and keeping them white. This will also prevent the buildup of plaque, which also causes discoloration.

Avoid stain-causing foods and drinks

If you are a frequent tea, coffee or wine drinker, you’re going to have a harder time keeping your teeth white, especially if you only brush twice a day. It’s best to avoid stain-causing food and drinks to keep your teeth white.  Although you can brush after consuming any of these to combat the staining effects:

  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Soda
  • Wine
  • Citrus/acidic foods
  • Blueberries
  • Blackberries
  • Pomegranates

Many of these wear away enamel, which reduces the natural protection of your teeth. Others cause stains just by the color of the food or drink in question.

Use a whitening toothpaste

A whitening toothpaste is a must if you want to keep your smile bright. Many people make a big mistake when brushing their teeth – they rinse after brushing. When you do that, the toothpaste doesn’t have time to work. The compounds in the toothpaste need to be left on your teeth to work properly. Make sure you brush at least twice a day, and after eating or drinking any of the stain-causing foods above.

Stop smoking

Smoking yellows teeth, period. The tar and nicotine buildup on your teeth, and it’s very difficult to remove after a certain point. If you want a whiter smile, it’s best to quit entirely. Quitting smoking is hard, but the health benefits alone are worth it!

Have regular touch-ups

Because teeth yellow naturally with age, additional whitening treatments will be needed as time goes on. Some people need touch-ups every 6 months, while others can go 1 or 2 years without needing one. It all depends on how much care you take with your teeth!

Maintaining a white smile takes a little extra work, but is ultimately worth it. If you’re interested in having your teeth whitened, set up an appointment at Dr. Chauvin’s office!