“Doctor, I wish my teeth were whiter. I’m afraid to smile when people are taking pictures.
Is there anything you can do to help me?”
This is a question that I’ve heard many times in my career as a dentist.
Many people are dissatisfied with the colour of their teeth and the quality of their smile.
Helping these people is one of the most rewarding aspects of my job and why I love being a dentist.
So what can be done to help improve one’s smile?
Here’s what I often tell my patients:
- Keep your teeth clean.
- Daily brushing and flossing.Use a soft toothbrush to avoid damaging your gums. I also highly recommend using an electric toothbrush that utilises sonic waves to clean teeth.
- Use a normal, fluoride-enhanced toothpaste.So-called, whitening toothpastes do not remove stains, but rather, have polishing agents that are more abrasive to the tooth surface and which, over time can wear down your enamel.
- Fluoride mouthwashes can aid in keeping teeth clean.Fluoride bonds with tooth enamel to increase the hardness and smoothness of teeth. This in turns makes it easier to fight plaque, calculus, and tooth decay.
- Regular visits to your dentistfor teeth cleaning can keep your teeth free of plaque and calculus, which can cause discolouration and staining.
- Avoid foods that stain your teeth. Teeth are composed of organic, living cells. Hard cells for sure, but cells none the less. As such, they are susceptible to harsh chemicals and can absorb those substances when they come into contact with them.
What foods stain your teeth? I could give you a long list, but just try to think of it like this: if it will stain your clothes, it will stain your teeth.
Foods that are acidic and dark coloured will stain your teeth. Coffee, chocolate, cola drinks, red wine, acai berries, blue berries, strawberries, and so on.
If you marinated your teeth in such foods, ugly discolouration would soon follow. The longer you hold discolouring foods in your mouth, the more susceptible to darkening your teeth are.
The solution to this dietary problem is to moderate your intake of such items, and to rinse or brush your teeth after partaking of these admittedly delicious, albeit teeth staining items.
Your saliva is one of the most effective whitening agents.
Rinsing or brushing immediately after eating or drinking allows your teeth to recover as quickly as possible from exposure to any enamel staining substances.
Stop smoking or using any other tobacco products. The tar in tobacco sticks to the surfaces of the teeth and causes a plethora of problems, from directly staining the enamel, to making it more difficult to clean teeth, aiding plaque build up and calculus formation.
And, of course, the deleterious health effects of tobacco consumption are widely known.
All of these practices will help you get your whitest and brightest natural smile.
But what if you are still not satisfied with your smile? Can you do anything to improve the colour of your teeth beyond what is your natural best?
Yes. There are a number of products that are available to the general public and approved for home use.
However, most of them are not highly efficacious and usually involve time consuming and potentially dangerous procedures that can harm your teeth, gums, and cause you unnecessary pain if incorrectly used.
Come to our office and let us examine your teeth thoroughly. We can then recommend the best possible solution for your exact situation.
We offer the Pola Advanced Tooth Whitening System and Zoom Whitening, both of which are administered in our office under highly controlled, safe conditions.
We provide you with the highest quality whitening systems to ensure that you achieve the finest results, with the least amount of discomfort.
If you prefer, you can use our Take Home Teeth Whitening System. We will give you detailed instructions and coaching to help you attain the highest satisfaction possible from the convenience of your own home.
We are located at S13, HQ South Tower, 520 Wickham St in Fortitude Valley.