At-Home Solutions For A Whiter Smile

At-Home Solutions For A Whiter Smile
Posted on 01/17/2018

At Lindsey Orthodontics, what we do best is make sure that you have a perfect, healthy smile that you can show off everywhere you go. That’s why when you visit us for your regularly scheduled appointments, you leave our office only after we’ve done our job with making your smile is look absolutely pristine. However, since you’re not always going to be in our office, and you’re not going to get cleanings and teeth whitening from your dentist all of the time, below are some ways to keep your smile sparkling clean and brilliantly white from the comfort of your own home in between appointments.

Limit Staining Foods & Drinks

If you’re trying to avoid getting stains on your teeth, the best solution is to attack the problem at the cause: the stuff you’re eating and drinking. There are many culprits out there that are notorious for teeth stains such as coffee, tea, wine, berries, and soda As tasty as all of these things may be, if you want that whiter smile, it’s in your best interest to either cut those things out of your daily diet, or at least limit them to avoid getting heavy stains. If you can’t cut them out completely, you can also try to time your meals with those foods to where you can brush your teeth right after, to clean away the food particles and pigment before they have the chance to settle into your tooth enamel.

Maintain Your Brushing & Flossing Routine

Did you think that this wouldn’t be on this list of how to keep your smile clean at home? A consistent routine of brushing and flossing your teeth is the cornerstone of a healthy, radiant smile, which is why your dentist and orthodontist always remind you at your appointments! If you have a great routine at home, you’ll keep your teeth free from food particles, harmful bacteria, and tooth-destroying plaque, which will not only keep your smile looking nice and white, but also make sure that your smile stays healthy for years to come.

Rinsing With Fluoride

If dentists or orthodontists had to pick their favorite mineral, it would probably be fluoride. This naturally occurring mineral is part of the earth’s crust, and it finds its way into many of the foods we eat and the water that we drink. What’s so great about fluoride is that when it comes into contact with our teeth, there’s an amazing reaction called “remineralization” that happens where the fluoride actually helps draw in other essential minerals like calcium as phosphate into our teeth to make them stronger. By making our teeth stronger, fluoride also protects our teeth from future damage from things like bacteria and plaque. While naturally occurring fluoride may not be enough to make a big difference in strengthening your teeth, there are products like mouthwash and toothpaste that contain fluoride that you can use to make sure you get all that you need.

Oil Pulling

Oil pulling involves swishing coconut oil around your mouth like mouthwash for 2 minutes to clear away bacteria in your mouth. Its origins lie in traditional medicinal practices in India dating back 3000 to 5000 ago. While there is no research supporting that this method actually whitens teeth, there are studies showing that it does effectively clear away bacteria from your mouth that could wear away your teeth and lead to discoloration. Also, compared to other at-home methods floating around out there online, this method does not expose your teeth to harmful acids or abrasive materials. It’s important to note that oil pulling should never be used as a substitution for your standard brushing and flossing routine, but adding in swishing some oil around your teeth every day won’t hurt!

Whitening Methods To Avoid

As we mentioned with oil pulling, there are an number of at-home whitening methods that continue to spread online that claim to whiten teeth while not being back by any meaningful research. To make matters worse, these methods expose your teeth to acids and abrasive materials that can actually wear away your enamel instead of lifting those stains. When you wear away this enamel, you will get closer and closer to the layer underneath called dentin, which is naturally yellow. Over time, your teeth will look more yellow as the dentin becomes visible among many other possible dental issues. If you’re hoping to have a white, healthy smile for the rest of your life, some at-home whitening methods you should avoid are:

  • Brushing with mashed strawberries mixed with baking soda
  • Brushing with activated charcoal
  • Rinsing with apple cider vinegar
  • Rubbing fruit peels (orange, lemon, banana) on your teeth

Contact Us For More At-Home Tips

If you have any questions about these at-home teeth whitening and cleaning methods, the methods you should avoid, or anything else about keeping your smile healthy, just contact us at Lindsey Orthodontics! Our staff is always ready and willing to help you get the information you need. Just don’t forget to come to your regularly scheduled appointments with us at either of Locust Grove or Griffin offices to make sure you keep your smile looking as bright and white as can be. We look forward to seeing your in our office at your next visit!