Do you start your day with a coffee or tea? And maybe have many more throughout your day to keep you running?
While the coffee or tea might make you bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, the opposite may be true for your teeth. Over time the enamel in your teeth breaks down, exposing the less dense interior of the tooth, called dentin.
The dentin under your tooth’s enamel soaks up food colour. Stains also cling onto plaque or tartar build-up and sit tight on and between your teeth. This is how stains stay on your teeth. Stains caused by coffee or smoking tobacco make teeth more yellow, however, there is a silver lining. The more yellow the tooth stain, the more chance of removal. Yaletown Dentistry has compiled a list of eight ways to prevent your teeth from staining.
Brush after every meal
Remove the stain before it has time to set by cleaning your teeth routinely after eating. We would suggest waiting about 20-30 minutes, however, to lower the acidity of your mouth, before brushing. This will prevent unnecessary enamel wear. Many foods and drinks are very acidic, including wine, fruits and juices, and coffee and tea.
Test your plaque accumulation
Check your plaque by rinsing with a disclosing solution. You can get disclosing tablets from the pharmacy. This shows you the remaining plaque on your teeth, after brushing. Where the plaque remains is where the stains will form so it’s beneficial to see where you need to spend more time brushing.
Switch to an electric toothbrush
People who have a hard time brushing their teeth may find they brush more with an electric toothbrush than their run-of-the-mill, manual variety. Sonicare-type brushes will help clean better than a manual for most people.
We offer Sonicare toothbrushes to our patients with incredible savings, compared to stores like London Drugs and Costco. This is a win-win, as our patients have the best oral hygiene!
If you don’t have a toothbrush and toothpaste handy after eating, rinse the food from your teeth with water. Drinking water with your meals and drinks is a good natural cleanser.
Use a whitening toothpaste
Whitening toothpaste has peroxide which stays on the teeth for a brief period, giving you a slightly brighter smile, temporarily. The effect isn’t long-lasting because chances are, you’ll be going back to the same things that stained your teeth in the first place, like drinking coffee or tea. We don’t suggest using whitening toothpastes for extended periods. Just here and there, perhaps a few times in a month before a big event!
Sip through a straw
If you are going to continue drinking coffee, teas, or sodas, sip through a straw. This limits the exposure to your teeth. Easier to do with chilled drinks than hot!
Try whitening strips
Whitening strips are tape that has peroxide and fit across your teeth. This keeps the peroxide on your teeth for longer than tooth polish would. As a result, this leaves your teeth a bit brighter. Strips are safe, easy to use, and easy on your wallet. Routine use of tooth strips may leave your teeth two to three shades lighter.
Strips have limitations as they are not custom fit to your teeth. Sometimes results are minimal and leave the teeth striped in colour.
Visit the dentist regularly
A professional teeth cleaning is recommended to be done at least twice a year. Even after your first professional cleaning, the bacteria-causing plaque grows within 48 hours. Six months later, even the most conscientious brusher inevitably has plaque so hardened that professional tools are required for removal. Visiting your dentist regularly has a positive effect on strain removal and oral health.
Get a professional whitening
Yaletown Dentistry offers different options that are custom fit and guaranteed to give results. These include in-office whitening and take-home tray systems. Call us for a complimentary consultation to see which option is best for you and the benefits of each system.
At Yaletown Dentistry we practice gentle dentistry for a painless dentist experience. We offer teeth whitening, hygiene and prevention, general dentistry, cosmetic dentistry and Invisalign. We are the top Invisalign provider in Vancouver.
Visit Yaletown Dentistry and book a free consultation. Book an appointment online or over the phone for a brighter, healthier smile that illuminates the room.