Professionally whitening your teeth is one of the best things you can do for your self-esteem and smile. Worth the extra cost compared with the many options on the market, it is safe and has longer lasting results. However, it is important to protect your investment and there are ways that you can do this.
Regardless of the various influencers and adverts that can be misleading, the truth is that teeth whitening is not permanent. As little as three weeks after your treatment is finished, you will see a slight decrease in brightness. This is caused by the dehydration that occurs immediately after treatment, causing the teeth to appear whiter than they actually are. Once the rehydration occurs, a few weeks later you will achieve your final shade of white, which will last a few months before staining starts to affect the whitened enamel of your teeth. Although this sounds rather discouraging, the good news is there are ways to maintain your sparkling white teeth.
Avoiding coloured beverages
Following your treatment, it is crucial to avoid drinking coloured drinks. Stay away from drinks such as coffee, fizzy fruit drinks, fruit juices, tea, red wine and beers.
These drinks are likely to stain your teeth owing to their vibrant and artificial colours. Avoiding them will protect your newly whitened enamel from discolouration. Drinking lots of plain water will help maintain your white smile and keep your body and mouth hydrated. Consider using a straw if you can’t go without your morning coffee or tea.
Water, coconut water, milk, coconut milk, white wine and clear spirits such as gin and vodka.
Avoiding staining foods
If you are afraid to drop sauce from a curry you’re eating on your white shirt for fears of staining, you should also be conscious of that curry staining your white teeth. Be sure to avoid greasy, acidic and coloured foods for at least six weeks after teeth whitening. Leaving a significant amount of time before consuming these types of foods will protect your enamel and prevent staining. Types of foods worth avoiding are dark coloured sauces such as tomato ketchup, soy sauce, bbq sauce and balsamic vinegar. Also avoid colourful spices such as paprika and turmeric, often used in curries.
Other foods to avoid are highly pigmented berries like blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries; acidic and citrus fruits like oranges, limes and lemons; and dark chocolate and artificially coloured sweets.
After at least six weeks of cutting these foods out, make sure to limit eating them and always drink plenty of water during and after eating.
There are many options for foods you can consume that are completely safe after having your teeth whitened. These foods are usually included in what is called the ‘’white diet’’. The ‘’white diet’’ is basically consuming foods with no colour for the first two weeks after treatment. The foods safe to eat are:
Plain yogurt, white rice, uncoloured pasta, white fish (cod) chicken, tofu, oatmeal, cereal (no artificial colour), Egg whites, potatoes, almonds, cashews, cauliflower, chickpeas, cheese (no dyes) pears, bananas, vanilla ice cream, white chocolate.
Tobacco products are known to be extremely harmful to our oral health and body. Using tobacco products is one of the fastest ways to re-stain your teeth. People who do smoke or chew tobacco will constantly have to top up their professional whitening treatments. Quit using these products, not only for your health but also to protect your pearly whites.
Don’t use coloured toothpaste
Toothpastes can come in all kinds of shades – red, blue, green, black and white. AVOID any coloured toothpaste after teeth whitening. Using white toothpastes for sensitive teeth and a clear mouthwash will preserve your bright teeth, while protecting them from sensitivity.
The answer to keeping your newly whitened teeth bright is not to deprive yourself from everything you love. Being conscious of your habitual decisions of how often you consume certain foods and drinks is the discipline you need to maintain your desired whitening results.