How to Keep Your Teeth White After Age 40
Aging takes a toll on the body, including teeth. As we get older, our teeth may lose their pearly white shine due to a natural wearing away of enamel. However, that doesn't mean we need to give up on having a sparkling smile. Here are 20 ways you can keep your teeth white after age 40.
Brush for Two Minutes
According to the American Dental Association, brushing for at least two minutes and covering all areas of the mouth, including front teeth, is crucial to preventing stains and yellowness.
Activated Charcoal May Help
Activated charcoal is a popular natural substance said to have benefits for teeth whitening. While there is no scientific proof, brushing with activated charcoal products made from materials such as coconut shells or wood may be worth a try.
Avoid Dark Beverages and Foods
While it's difficult to completely avoid coffee, tea, and dark foods, brushing before consuming them and rinsing the mouth with water afterward can reduce staining.
The Ayurvedic practice of oil-pulling, in which a teaspoon of oil is swished in the mouth for 20 minutes, may help naturally whiten teeth as well as prevent bad breath, tooth decay, and cracked lips.
Increase Your Intake of Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are naturally crunchy and can help clean teeth as they are chewed. Try incorporating carrots, apples, broccoli, celery, and other crunchy vegetables for a better smile.
Use Whitening Toothpaste
Whitening toothpaste can remove surface stains and comes highly recommended by the American Dental Association. Be sure to brush thoroughly for two minutes and cover all areas of the mouth.
Check Your Tap Water
High levels of fluoride in tap water can lead to discolored teeth. Be sure to check the Center for Disease Control's interactive map to see the fluoride levels in your area.
Avoid Citrusy Foods
While acidic fruits are great sources of vitamins, the acid can also erode tooth enamel and make teeth appear more yellow. To avoid this, brush teeth before consuming acidic foods and use fresh lemon juice in water.
Try an Electric Toothbrush
Studies show that powered toothbrushes are more effective at reducing plaque and gingivitis than manual ones.
Take Advantage of In-Office Whitening Systems
In-office whitening systems are often more powerful and effective than at-home products, with results seen after just one treatment.
Use Baking Soda
Baking soda is a mild abrasive that can remove minor stains on teeth. However, more severe stains may require in-office whitening.
Rinse Mouth after Eating
Tomato products and dark berries can lead to staining, but rinsing the mouth with water after eating can help remove the residue that causes it.
Use Mouthwash with Peroxide
Mouthwash with peroxide can help whiten teeth while promoting fresh breath.
Flossing daily can prevent bacteria buildup and enamel damage that causes a yellowish hue.
Keep Medications in Mind
Certain medications, such as antihistamines and antipsychotic drugs, can cause discoloration of teeth.
- Brush for Two Minutes
- Activated Charcoal May Help
- Avoid Dark Beverages and Foods
- Oil-Pulling Method
- Increase Your Intake of Fruits and Vegetables
- Use Whitening Toothpaste
- Check Your Tap Water
- Avoid Citrusy Foods
- Quit Smoking
- Try an Electric Toothbrush
- Take Advantage of In-Office Whitening Systems
- Use Baking Soda
- Rinse Mouth after Eating
- Use Mouthwash with Peroxide
- Floss Daily
- Keep Medications in Mind
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