Beyond Brushing: 11 Lifestyle & Health Habits Impacting Teeth Whiteness

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Teeth whiteness through cosmetic dentistry or healthy habits
Photo by Shiny Diamond from Pexels

Teeth whitening is the most popular cosmetic dentistry procedure worldwide. Everyone wants a bright smile. Many stick to strict brushing routines to achieve that smile.

However, teeth whiteness depends on more than just brushing. Various lifestyle and health habits can impact the color of your teeth.

Today, we will unpack 11 habits to help you achieve a brighter smile.

1. Eating Certain Foods

Your diet has a significant impact on your dental health and teeth whiteness. Certain foods are staining and can make your teeth appear more yellowish. Some of these foods include:

  • Curry
  • Beets
  • Berries
  • Soy sauce
  • Tomato sauce
  • Balsamic vinegar

The pigments in these foods can stick to your teeth and cause discoloration over time, forcing you to turn to cosmetic dentistry to undo their effects. 

Besides staining foods, sugary foods and candies can also cause teeth discoloration by creating cavities and making your teeth more vulnerable.

It’s best to eliminate these foods from your diet. However, you might have a sweet tooth or crave some berries. It’s ok to indulge as long as you don’t overdo it.


2. Drinking Certain Beverages

Foods are not the only factors that can cause teeth discoloration. Certain beverages also have the power to stain your teeth. Some of these beverages include:

  • Tea
  • Soda
  • Coffee
  • Red wine
  • Sports drinks
  • Energy drinks

Tea, coffee, and red wine contain tannins that can lead to discoloration. Meanwhile, sodas and energy drinks are full of sugar, which can erode enamel and stain teeth. 

You can always restore the color of your teeth with the help of cosmetic dentistry, but it’s best to limit your intake of these beverages as much as possible.


3. Not Using Straws

How you drink your beverages can also affect the whiteness of your teeth. If you decide to have a sugary or acidic drink from the list above, it’s best to use a straw.

Without a straw, these beverages will directly contact your teeth. This contact will increase the risk of teeth staining. With the help of a straw, you can limit direct contact and maintain the natural color of your teeth.


4. Excessive Alcohol Consumption

You probably know that excessive alcohol consumption can harm your health, but did you know that it can cause teeth discoloration that requires cosmetic dentistry procedures?

Alcohol can dry out your mouth and reduce saliva production. Without adequate saliva, your teeth are not protected from staining and decay.

Moderate your alcohol consumption to maintain good dental health. If you decide to have a drink, be sure to rinse your mouth with water afterward.


5. Not Drinking Enough Water

Woman in White Shirt Drinking Water From Clear Glass with Her Eyes Closed
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

We have all heard of the “drink eight glasses of water per day” rule. As it turns out, water is not just vital for your overall health. It’s also necessary for optimal oral health and teeth whiteness.

Not drinking enough water can cause food particles and bacteria to linger in your mouth, leading to plaque buildup and eventual teeth staining that requires cosmetic dentistry.

When you drink water, you flush out remnant food particles and reduce the risk of discoloration. Be sure to drink eight glasses of water daily to stay hydrated and keep your smile as bright as possible.


6. Smoking and Using Tobacco Products

Tobacco products are among the most dangerous substances for our health. One of the most harmful effects of smoking and using tobacco products is tooth damage, especially discoloration.

The chemicals in these products can leave stains on your teeth, making them appear brown and unattractive. 

While a cosmetic dentistry procedure from a teeth whitening dentist can successfully remove these stubborn stains, it’s best to quit smoking for good to improve your oral and overall health.


7. Excessive Fluoride Exposure

Fluoride is one of the most crucial minerals for healthy teeth. It’s added to your daily toothpaste and mouthwash to keep your mouth healthy and your breath fresh. However, too much fluoride can hurt your teeth.

Excessive fluoride exposure can lead to a condition called dental fluorosis. This condition can cause white or brown spots to appear on the surface of your teeth. 

You must monitor fluoride exposure to avoid needing cosmetic dentistry. Consult a dentist to choose the best possible toothpaste and mouthwash for your dental needs.


8. Inadequate Vitamin D and Calcium Intake

One of the best dental care tips to improve your teeth is getting enough vitamin D and calcium. These nutrients can keep your teeth strong and healthy.

Without enough vitamin D and calcium, your teeth are more prone to staining due to weakened enamels. 

Try to follow a balanced diet rich in vitamin D and calcium sources. Some foods you can eat to meet your dietary needs and avoid needing cosmetic dentistry include dairy products, leafy greens, and fortified foods.


9. Using Your Teeth as a Tool

Your teeth are not tools for opening packages, biting nails, or chewing on non-food items. Using your teeth this way will wear down your enamel, increasing the risk of discoloration and chipping.

10. Grinding Your Teeth

Teeth grinding or bruxism is another habit that can damage enamel and affect teeth whiteness. The constant friction will wear down the enamel and cause the underlying dentin to show through, making your teeth more susceptible to discoloration.

In severe cases, bruxism can cause jaw pain and damage tooth restorations. It’s crucial to address this problem with the help of a dentist to keep your teeth white without cosmetic dentistry.


11. Taking Certain Medications

Certain medications, such as antipsychotics, antihistamines, and antibiotics, can also contribute to teeth discoloration. These meds reduce saliva production, leading to dry mouth and a higher risk of staining.

Elder dental care is especially crucial when considering the impact of medications on teeth whiteness since many older patients might be relying on these treatments for a better quality of life.

Discuss potential side effects with your healthcare provider if you’re on any medications. They might be able to recommend alternatives with a lesser impact on the whiteness of your teeth.

Adopt Healthier Lifestyle Habits to Achieve a Brighter Smile

Teeth whiteness goes beyond brushing. The list above covers just some of the factors that can impact the whiteness of your teeth. 

While cosmetic dentistry can help you restore the color of your teeth, it’s crucial to adopt healthier lifestyle habits to give your smile the best chance to shine!

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