There are lots of commercial teeth whiteners on the market. You can also have your teeth whitened at the dentist, which is the most effective whitener available. In between professional whitening treatments, you can take steps to keep teeth looking white and sparkly by eating right. In particular, these five foods that whiten teeth naturally will work to keep your smile bright.
HOW DO TEETH GET STAINED?
Teeth can become discolored for a variety of reasons. Certain medications may result in discolored teeth. Red wine can stain teeth, as can tobacco use; especially chewing tobacco. Processed foods such as certain candies that contain food coloring additives can also stain teeth. Even certain professional-grade antiseptic mouth rinses such as Perident, can stain teeth, at least temporarily. Discoloration may take the form of grayness, yellowing, or stained spots. Diseased teeth that are dying are not stained, and need to be professionally treated by a professional dentist.
FOODS THAT WHITEN TEETH
While there are many foods and drinks that can stain teeth, others work for you, not against you. The following foods that whiten teeth naturally work either by special enzymes, compounds, how they produce saliva, or simply by abrasion to help whiten your teeth. As always, eating foods that whiten teeth is not a substitute for proper oral health care. Be sure to brush, floss and rinse regularly in order to keep your teeth in the best possible condition.
Strawberries contain an enzyme that works to whiten teeth. This enzyme, called malic acid, is one reason why strawberries taste so good. In fact, it’s an organic compound that is added to many other foods. In its natural form in strawberries, malic acid works like a whitening agent. Since it is an acid, it can also damage tooth enamel if left for prolonged periods on the surface of the teeth. Considering this, it’s best to rinse your mouth after using strawberries as one of the foods that whiten teeth. To try this, mash up a clean strawberry in a small bowl. Add a bit of your regular toothpaste and stir together. Put an amount on your toothbrush and brush as you normally would. Rinse.
Pineapples contain a compound called bromelain. Bromelain has anti-inflammatory and natural cleansing properties that makes pineapples one of the foods that whiten teeth. In a research report by the Journal of Dental Sciences, bromelain was proven to be effective as a tooth whitener. To try this, simply enjoy fresh cut pineapple as a snack or dessert. You can also try adding pineapple to a fruit smoothie. Avoid canned pineapple that contains added sugars, as this could lead to tooth decay.
3. RAW BROCCOLI
There are lots of good reasons to eat broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables, but did you know that broccoli is one of the foods that whiten teeth? According to the European Journal of Dentistry, eating fresh, raw broccoli polishes your teeth as you bite and chew. To try, just add raw broccoli to salads, or eat as a snack. Be sure to wash raw broccoli thoroughly before eating.
4. HARD CHEESE
Many cultures in the world serve a cheese plate after meals. It turns out this is not just a matter of taste. The American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry reports findings that eating hard cheese helps to stimulate saliva, which in turn help to clean your teeth. Hard cheese also contains lactic acid, which works to remove stains on discolored teeth. To try, assemble a selection of hard cheese varieties on a cheese plate, such as Pecorino, Gouda, Cheddar, Parmesan and Grana Padano.
An apple a day helps to keep your teeth white, too. When you munch on hard fruits like apples, your teeth get a good scrubbing. This works almost like a natural toothbrush to polish teeth and keep plaque from building up. Apples contain a high amount of fructose, so be sure to thoroughly rinse afterward to avoid exposing your teeth to excess amounts of sugar. To try this, simply snack on fresh apples as desired. You can enjoy peeled or unpeeled; it doesn’t make a difference as far as the teeth whitening benefits are concerned. These foods that whiten teeth shouldn’t be relied upon as the sole way to care for discolored teeth. If your teeth are already severely discolored due to disease, smoking or certain food agents like red wine, it’s best to start off with a professional teeth whitening from your professional dentist. That way, you will have a clean set of teeth as a starting point. After that, and in between dentist visits, you can rely on these foods that whiten teeth naturally to help maintain the whiteness of your smile. For more tips on keeping teeth white, please contact us today.