You see teeth whiteners all over the market. Quite expensive they are, and yet they yield an artificial result. A pretty, white smile starts with good, dental hygiene. So, it should go without saying-brush three times a day. There are some who feel this everyday advice from dental professionals is cursory. But it is essential for keeping teeth clean and white after eating, and, to prevent the buildup of bacteria that dull the teeth. Here are 8 tips that will help to brighten your smile in more ways than one…
Are you brushing properly? The proper way to brush is to hold the toothbrush at a 45 degree angle to your mouth. That means making sure your forearm is parallel to the floor and the elbow is high not drooping-when you brush. Microscopically, teeth have ridges running up and down the tooth. Although you cannot see the ridges, it is here, that food particles and bacteria lodge “dulling” your teeth and detracting from the brightness of your smile. It’s a habit of comfort to let the elbow droop when brushing, but in doing so, the toothbrush does not clean directly in the ridges. When you hold your forearm properly-making sure your elbow is high-then brush straight up and down in practiced, deliberate strokes, you’ll finally clean in the ridges and see improvement right away.
Are you using a good toothbrush? It’s an error to think that a toothbrush is a toothbrush is a toothbrush. That is not the case. You’ll see a real difference if you use a good toothbrush when brushing your teeth. An Oral B toothbrush cleans teeth to their maximum brightness. Choose an Oral B toothbrush with a flathead, that is, where all the bristle are the same length. If you like a toothbrush with varying length bristles, all the better, alternate using both toothbrushes at different cleaning times.
Use a peroxide rinse. Peroxide is a debriding agent. That is, it cleans putrid matter from hidden cracks and crevices in your mouth. It is also a whitener. Even if your toothpaste contains peroxide, you’ll get better results if you introduce peroxide, instead, as a separate application (not in your toothpaste) . Here’s how to add a peroxide rinse to your regimen.
- Mix equal parts peroxide and water in a glass.
- Take a mouthful, swish around in mouth for at least one minute and spit out
- Brush your teeth following the guidelines above
CareOne brand was used for this article. Their directions call for use up to four times a day and at bedtime or as directed by your dentist or doctor. Follow the directions on the brand you purchase. Look for “Oral Debriding Agent”
Use baking soda as an alternative to peroxide. Baking soda is a whitener that does not have the extra hygienic qualities of peroxide. However, as a stand-alone whitener, it can serve a purpose. For use, squeeze about two-ounces of toothpaste in a small dish. Sprinkle about 1/2 level teaspoon of baking soda on the toothpaste and blend. Coat the bristles of your toothbrush and brush as outlined above. Cover remainder for future use.
As stated in the introduction, brush 3 times a day-mornings, afternoons and at evenings/bedtime. If you’re not brushing three times a day, start today. Make the extra effort to brush in the afternoons, carry a toothbrush, travel-sized toothpaste and a small container of spring water with you. Brush your teeth, take a swig of the water, rinse and spit out. Brush during your afternoon visit to the restroom. Or make an appointment to brush your teeth by setting an alarm on one of your mobile devices. One thing you can be sure of is the more times you incorporate the habit of brushing three times a day in your daily routine, the easier it will become. After a while it will become automatic. As for the evenings, this is easier, brush at bedtime or after last meal.
Use a new toothbrush every three to four months. Even better, it’s good practice to have 2, 3, or 4 toothbrushes at the ready at any given time. Then set specific times throughout the year to start using a new toothbrush so there’s no guessing. Here is a formula you can use, holidays: Jan 1, (New Year’s Day), April 1 (April Fool’s Day) July 4, (Independence Day) and by October 12 (Columbus Day varies).
Try a gel toothpaste (Closeup is a popular brand). It may work better for you to clean and brighten your teeth.
Buy an oral irrigator to flush away food particles after brushing. What a clean feeling your mouth will have. If you’ve never tried an oral irrigator, it’s like a shower for your teeth-refreshing!
Of all these tips, I have had the best success, as a combination, with an Oral B toothbrush, Closeup toothpaste and the peroxide rinse. Whatever your oral hygiene regimen, make sure to include fluoride to reduce the incidence of cavities. Fluoride can be purchased in toothpaste, mouthwash or added to spring water. And do visit your dentist for regular checkups.
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