As we've said, the first thing that most of us notice, when having a conversation with someone, is their smile. Healthy, bright white teeth and a nice smile always catch the attention of onlookers.
To make your teeth white and healthy, eat a healthy diet. Brushing your teeth after every meal is also a good idea. There are whitening toothpastes, mouthwashes and strips available at your local store that you can try as well. If you are facing any problems or difficulties with your teeth, don't wait too long to see your dentist. And, be sure to visit your dentist twice a year for healthy teeth and gums.
Your smile is your gift to the world.
Speaking of Women's Health dental expert, Jordan Pelchovitz, DDS, suggests the following tips:
- Switch to an electric toothbrush. These newer brushes do a great job of cleaning your teeth, gums and tongue, and some have timer to allow for adequate cleaning time.
- Floss at least once daily. Ask your dentist or hygienist to show you the proper way to make sure you are getting your gums and teeth as clean as possible.
- If you can't brush after a meal or snack, chew gum that contains the sugar-substitute xylitol. It helps fight decay by producing saliva, your body's natural tooth cleanser.
- Avoid tobacco products in any form. They can cause staining of the teeth, gum disease and cancer of the mouth and throat.
- Eat a balanced diet. The Vitamin C in fruits and vegetables help promote healthy gums by maintaining collagen levels. Foods like milk, yogurt and cottage cheese bathe the teeth in calcium, which helps fight tooth decay.
- Consider protecting against bone loss with dental implants when you lose a tooth. An implant maintains the bones that support your other teeth, lips and cheeks.
- Straight teeth are the easiest to keep clean and free of decay and gum disease. Ask your dentist if you are a candidate for invisible braces, so you will not have traditional metal braces.
- Do not ignore gums that bleed during brushing and flossing. Bleeding may be a sign of gum disease, which has been linked to heart disease, osteoporosis and diabetes.
- Hormones affect your mouth just as they do the rest of your body. Estrogen levels during puberty, menstruation, pregnancy and menopause fluctuate, which can cause gum disease.
- Preventive care is the best care. See your dentist every 6 months for a thorough cleaning, oral cancer screening and x-rays to detect problems early, when they are the easiest (and least costly) to fix.