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06 / 05 / 2019

How To Achieve And Maintain A Bright Smile

May is National Smile Month – the perfect opportunity to assess your oral health regime. A bright, healthy smile is so important, for many different reasons. Your teeth play a key role in your lives, so it’s vital you take good care of them. Without them, you can’t chew and digest your food, or even speak clearly. Then there’s the aesthetic aspect. A great smile can transform how you look. It can also have an impact on the way you feel. When you’re confident about your appearance, your self-esteem soars. So, keeping that smile bright helps keep your mind-set positive too. But don’t despair if your pearly whites aren’t as radiant as you’d like them to be. There are lots of easy ways to improve your oral health, and achieve and maintain a healthy smile, from basic dental care to teeth whitening.

The Basics Of Brushing

Bright, healthy teeth are clean teeth, so regular and individually adapted tooth-brushing is important. Use fluoride toothpaste and brush gently but thoroughly for as long as is needed to clean your teeth thoroughly without causing harm to your gums or your teeth. This helps to stop the build-up of plaque. Plaque is a sticky, bacterial film like a carpet of bacteria on our teeth surfaces. This forms constantly on our teeth. If it’s not kept in check, it causes cavities and gum disease, and can harden into tartar. None of which is conducive to a healthy smile! So, keep your plaque under control with regular brushing – and don’t forget to change your toothbrush regularly. A fresh brush will clean your teeth effectively without causing damage to the surrounding tissues. Applying the correct amount of pressure is also important. Too much pressure will simply wear off your tooth enamel and damage your gums.

Complement your brushing with daily flossing. This way, you can protect your smile and aim to dislodge any trapped food between your teeth. You can also reduce gum disease with flossing as it removes plaque that forms along the gum line. Healthy gums are the foundation of a bright, healthy smile, so never neglect them!

Watch What (And When) You Eat

Too much sugar is the enemy of strong, healthy teeth. Constant snacking isn’t helpful, either.

Give your teeth a 3-4 hour break between meals and avoid large or frequent amounts of fruit! Eat Vegetables instead! They are not as acidic as fruit, so they will not attack your enamel and they contain less sugar which will benefit both your teeth and your general health. Research recommends that less than 5% of our energy should come from sugar, so try to avoid sugars even if it is in drinks or smoothies. In our opinion fruit smoothies are far from innocent since they are high in both acids and sugars. Eat 4 portions of vegetables per day and only one of fruit, unless your doctor specifically recommends you otherwise.

Contrary to popular belief, teeth do not need any extra Calcium to stay strong once they have grown through the gums. They only need the correct amount of calcium as they are growing as tooth buds inside your jaw when you are a child. So, to keep your teeth and body healthy, you only need to follow the NHS governmental advice on recommended daily intakes of Calcium and minerals. Usually this does not mean that you need to take any extra supplements, just try to consume a balanced diet, packed with plenty of fresh preferably organic vegetables. Leafy greens, nuts, fish and dairy products are all great choices. Vegan options include soya beans, tofu and pulses. Making time for proper meals will help to protect your teeth. Day-long grazing on cakes, biscuits and sweets has the opposite effect. That’s because every single time we eat something, bacteria reacts with food to produce acid that attacks tooth enamel.

Similarly, pregnancy does not remove calcium from your teeth and does not weaken them. Pregnancy may influence your Calcium levels in your bones temporarily but the teeth remain unaffected by pregnancy itself since they have usually already been build up. What can affect your teeth during pregnancy is a diet rich in sugars and acids, so keeping a healthy diet during pregnancy will help you and your growing baby as well as both your and his/her teeth.

So say no to snacking if you want a bright, healthy smile! Drinking plenty of water can help to neutralise acid attacks, as can chewing sugar-free gum after eating. Lastly, try to avoid foods and drinks that are known to stain and discolour your teeth. Popular culprits include tea, coffee, red wine, beetroot and curry.

Teeth Whitening

If you have badly stained teeth, you may need professional help to achieve a bright, white smile. DIY over-the-counter whitening kits seldom contain an effective level of whitening ingredients. In fact, they can cause real damage to teeth if used incorrectly.

Our expert team will assess your suitability for one of our professional teeth-whitening treatments. These are safe, easy to use and achieve visible results, fast. We take an impression of your teeth, in order to create a bespoke whitening tray. This is tailored to the shape and size of your mouth, for optimum results. You simply add the correct amount of whitening gel to the tray, then wear it in the comfort of your home. You should see full results – and enjoy whiter teeth – in around three weeks.

Cosmetic Dentistry Options

In addition to teeth whitening, we offer a number of advanced cosmetic dentistry options.

Most people are familiar with silver-coloured (amalgam) fillings. But white fillings are an increasingly popular choice for patients in pursuit of a whiter smile. There are several different types available. Two of the most common are glass ionomers and composites.

In addition to repairing cavities, white fillings can also be used to modify the colour and/or shape of a tooth. So they’re a great multi-tasking option if you’re keen to upgrade your grin.

If just one problem tooth is spoiling your smile, a dental crown could be the solution. This is an artificial cover or ‘cap’ that fits over an existing tooth, to camouflage it. A crown can improve a tooth’s shape, size, function and alignment. It’s also an effective way to disguise a discoloured tooth – perfect for a whiter smile. Crowns can be temporary or permanent. They are available in a variety of different materials, including porcelain and ceramic.

Veneers are yet another option for teeth that are stained, chipped or damaged. They are a great choice if you’re looking to enhance teeth brightness generally, or straighten your smile. Veneers are made of a restorative material (usually porcelain or composite) that is cemented onto your teeth. Properly performed, veneers can transform your smile. But they are a permanent, invasive treatment, so you’ll need to be sure they are completely right for you before you proceed.

Attend Regular Check-Ups

Even if you don’t require any specialist cosmetic dentistry services, regular dental check-ups are vital to preserving your smile. They allow us to identify and treat any potential problems quickly. They are also a great opportunity for you to receive general guidance and advice.

To make an appointment this National Smile Month, call 01473 257379. We look forward to seeing you soon.

We offer Denplan.

We are here to help you.
If you would like to speak to a member of our friendly team about any of the issues in this article please visit our contact page or call us on 01473 257379.

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“Hygienist, Angela sets you at ease from the moment you walk ...“

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“I am 70 years of age, and I have always been afraid to go to...“

Earlmain L

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“I booked an emergency treatment appointment, having had a to...“

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“Hygienist, Angela sets you at ease from the moment you walk in the door. She is not onl...“

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“Wow! The service I received from Jane was absolutely fantastic; she went above and beyond ...“

Dee D

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“I am 70 years of age, and I have always been afraid to go to the dentist. A broken tooth ...“

Earlmain L

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“I booked an emergency treatment appointment, having had a tooth for a few days and was una...“

Ginette S

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“As a nervous patient, I was very worried about having my tooth removed. I was instantly pu...“

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