It’s probably no secret — and no surprise — that smiling has a number of positive effects on you and those around you. Smiling can boost your mood, make you look more attractive to potential mates, and even lower your blood pressure. But many of our new patients come to us because their less-than-dazzling teeth often keep them from smiling as much as they’d like to.
If this sounds all too familiar to you, it may be time to schedule a consultation with the dentists at Scott Young, DDS, at our office in The Woodlands, Texas. We offer our patients both in-office and take-home options for teeth whitening, depending on your schedule, budget, and specific whitening needs.
Causes of teeth stains
There are a number of reasons your teeth may have stains or a yellowish tinge. Among the most common culprits in staining and discoloration are cigarettes and other tobacco products. Aging can also cause discoloration, and so can certain medications.
What stains your teeth also comes from what you eat. Foods and beverages that typically lead to stained teeth include:
- Chocolates and candies
- Slushies, snow cones, and juices with food coloring
- Tomato-based sauces and foods
- Black tea
- Red wine
By moderating these foods and rinsing after eating them, you can minimize staining before it penetrates the surface of your teeth to reach the yellowish dentin beneath the enamel.
Whitening treatment options
We offer two different whitening treatments depending on your specific needs, budget, and comfort. Our in-office teeth whitening procedure uses Philips Zoom!® whitening solution, which can brighten teeth up to eight shades in just a few hours. Zoom! uses custom-made trays and a patented LED lamp to whiten teeth over three 15-minute treatments.
If you prefer the DIY route, we also provide at-home options to gradually whiten your teeth over the course of a couple of weeks in your own home. Of course, no matter which option you choose, your results will last longer if you properly maintain them.
Maintaining your results
Don’t let your smile fade after you’ve whitened and brightened it! Maintain your results in only a few simple steps:
Make some changes to your diet
Food and beverage items that are darkly pigmented or use synthetic food coloring can easily lead to tooth discoloration. If you can, switch up your diet to foods that aren’t as damaging. For instance, white teas are a great substitute for black teas, and white wines for red. If you’re a coffee drinker, add milk to your coffee to minimize the staining effects.
Use a straw
We get it, sometimes you just really want that fizzy soda, or really need that coffee after a long night. Dark beverages can wreak havoc on your teeth and can cling to them longer than other beverages. When possible, try drinking them through a straw.
Can’t brush? Rinse!
It’s not always feasible to escape somewhere and brush your teeth. When you’re out and about and don’t have access to a washroom, rinse your mouth out well with plain water after eating and drinking. Not only does this help prevent stains, it can also dislodge food from between teeth that can lead to cavities and gum disease.
Kick the habit
If you’re a smoker, you already know of several good reasons to quit. Aside from causing a huge number of health problems, cigarettes and other tobacco products can do some serious damage to your smile. A smoker’s teeth usually have large areas of discoloration that range from yellow to brown.
See your dentist regularly
Dental checkups are a huge part of maintaining a bright and healthy smile. Not only do they help to prevent cavities and other dental diseases, but they also give your teeth a good cleaning and remove any unsightly plaque buildup.
Having your teeth whitened can seriously improve your confidence, self-image, and personal relationships. Once you’ve made that investment in yourself, maintaining your new smile is just knowing how to do the best you can for your teeth. Follow these steps and you’ll have a bright, shining smile for much longer than you might expect.
Are you ready to stop holding back and instead get a smile you won’t be able to keep to yourself? If so, call Scott Young, DDS, today at our office in the Woodlands, Texas, send us a message here on our website, or use our convenient online scheduling feature to set up your appointment any time. Together, we’ll create a smile you’ll love to show off!