Achieving Your Whitest Teeth Ever: What Are The Most Effective Solutions?

Having white teeth isn't just a status symbol for Hollywood movie stars, nor is it a privilege of wealth — it's basically a right everybody has. You don't have to spend a fortune or put yourself through any rigorous and bizarre dental treatment to achieve really white teeth; you simply have to find what works for you.

Do DIY Teeth Whitening Remedies Ever Work?

Beyond the obvious consumer hype printed on so many product labels, promising you your whitest smile ever, there are basic ingredients to look for when shopping around for a good teeth whitener. Despite the fact that they may not give you immediate results, nor will most work on stains you've spent years acquiring, you could be satisfied with the results when they're made with the following:

  • Carbamide peroxide.
  • Sodium hydroxide.

Any product you purchase over-the-counter with these ingredients should produce some measurable effects, although not likely as much as you'll see from a dentist, as they use more powerful versions, in their controlled environments. Be sure and follow the instructions on any product you buy carefully to avoid irritation or other, possibly more harmful, side effects, whether you're trying a toothpaste, whitening strips or any other product.

Are Natural Whiteners Effective?

You may have read that strawberries can whiten your teeth or that rubbing lemon peels over teeth after eating can prevent stains in the first place, but these natural, somewhat abstract methods don't have much science to back them up. To avoid wasting time and energy on strange but natural "whitening" concoctions, ask your dentist before trying them. Also ask if you plan on making your own toothpaste, which, in some cases, can lead to unnecessary abrasions to the surface of teeth or a total lack of fluoride protection.

Can You Prevent Stains?

One of the best methods of teeth whitening is avoidance of the foods and beverages that are going to leave the most visible and persistent stains. Depending on your enamel, you may see stains more readily than others, but in general, the same common items and habits lead to the worst stains:

  • Coffee and tea.
  • Grapes and berries in any form, including wine, jam and juice.
  • Tomatoes.
  • Soft drinks.
  • Any form of tobacco, including smoking and chewing.
  • Vaping, as the nicotine has been shown to reduce the amount of plaque-fighting saliva your mouth produces.

Does DNA Play A Role In Tooth Discoloration?

Unfortunately, the discoloration you see on your teeth may be coded in your genes, but that still doesn't mean it can't be dealt with effectively, both through proactive means of breaking down the stains and prevention. What may be more important to you, though, is the toughness of your enamel, which may also be inherited, but that often leads to more cavities. Your dentist should be able to help you solve this aspect of the mystery of your discolored teeth.

Do You Really Need A Dentist For The Whitest Possible Smile?

Not only does a dentist have the most advanced methods of whitening teeth, but they also have the distinct advantage of knowing you personally, which can't be said of any manufacturer of the products you could buy. For example, if you tend to have sensitive gums, that could be a factor in selecting the best chemical agents in your teeth whitening. If you have many fillings and other dental work, that needs to be taken into consideration when applying any strong chemical, too. Also, a dentist plays a major role in helping you keep your teeth healthy and strong to begin with, which puts you far ahead in terms of whiter teeth. Depending on your circumstances, the dentist can use state-of-the-art equipment to remove stains, and you can't get that effectiveness off the shelves in your favorite department or drug store, either.

If safety is a concern for you, as it should be, knowing the ingredients in your teeth whitener is easier when you're speaking to a real person, as opposed to reading off the label on a box. Ask your dentist what's going to work best for you, personally, even away from their office. They'll know what products you should try and what ones you should probably avoid, either because they're not made with entirely safe ingredients or because they're simply not going to do a good job for you. Either way, your dentist is the first and foremost authority on what's best for your teeth, gums, and body, so run any of your teeth whitening plans by them before shelling out too much money on any particular product outside of their office.

Ultimately, your best and most consistent teeth whitening results are going to come from a professional. Watch what you eat and drink, brush and floss after consuming anything, and keep your regular dental appointments. Basic oral health care is the foundation for healthy, clean teeth, and from that point, whitening shouldn't be too much of a big deal.