The number one recommendation is to brush your teeth for two minutes every day, morning and evening. And to floss once per day. However flossing is not very popular with patients, so there are other leading options which achieve the same results. Options include interdental cleaning brushes, and water or air flossers.
Cleaning between the teeth is important as brushing alone will not achieve adequate results. You can also use mouth wash once or twice a day, preferably a zero alcohol version. Mouth wash can also be placed into the tank of a water or flosser for added benefits.
By keeping teeth and gums healthy, your smile will naturally appear whiter and healthier. This will give you added confidence, and a fresh breath will also boost your confidence, as bad breath can cause patients to feel self conscious.
The most common cosmetic dentistry treatment sought is teeth whitening. This means that the number one concern people have about their smile is the colour of their teeth, wanting their teeth to be whiter.
Tooth discolouration can be caused by staining, for example through drinking and eating dark foods and beverages. This includes drinks like tea and coffee, and red wine, and foods such as curry, tomato pasta sauces etc. Discolouration can also be caused gradually over time, because the enamel is worn away, revealing the darker colour underneath.
In addition to making dietary changes, changes to routine can help, for example you don’t have to stop enjoying your favourite meals. So you could still have a curry, but then just brush your teeth soon after so you get the enjoyment but avoid staining your teeth.
You can also look at teeth whitening treatments such as in office treatments or home treatments. These involve the use of custom teeth trays and the application of whitening gel, which is effectively a bleaching agent. This will lift the shade of your teeth to several shades whiter, but cannot perform miracles. In addition the results will fade over time.
Patients will also need to follow strict dietary guidelines after treatment, sticking only to white foods and clear beverages. This is because bleaching dehydrates your teeth, making your teeth very absorbent to any substances in your mouth. So you cannot have tea coffee, red wine or dark foods like sauces and curries as this will all cause staining which may be permanent.
As results fade over time, home whitening trays are also available to extend the duration of your results. Or you can choose a home solution at the outset.
Many teeth whitening toothpastes are also available, either for use on a temporary or ongoing basis. Other emerging popular products include coconut charcoal which is grey and black in colour, but actually naturally lightens your teeth over a few days and weeks. This is popular and many patients buy a pot of powder or tube of coconut toothpaste on Amazon for use in their daily routine.
These are our top tips for improving your smile without going to the dentist.