As the sunny days of summer continue in full swing and we rush to the gym to take off those extra 10 pounds, many overlook a critical way to brighten your appearance, build your self confidence and exude a look of health and wellness -- enhancing your smile. While having the right wardrobe, accessories and hair style for summer all play a role in a bright appearance, surveys reveal that one of the first things people notice about others is their smile. According to Dr. Timothy Chase, a 15-year veteran of cosmetic dentistry, a healthy smile, white teeth and healthy gums can take 10 years off your appearance.
How important is a white bite?
Brushing and flossing are not always enough to keep your teeth shining their whitest. What you eat and what you do not eat can be a huge factor in how white your teeth are. Professional dentistry works the best, however, certain fruits and vegetables can aid in the quest for white teeth.
"Some people do not realize how important it can be to take care of your teeth," says Dr. Chase, D.M.D., a practicing partner in SmilesNY. "Not only does a healthy smile make you look and feel better, but dental health issues have been linked to systemic problems like heart and kidney issues and low birth weight in babies."
But taking care of simple dental issues doesn't mean forking over a ton of cash for porcelain veneers or going to sleep with awkward whitening trays. It's as easy as sticking with foods that are not only good for your smile, they're good for you bod, too. Win win!
"Brightening your appearance by creating a healthy smile is not as daunting a task as people think," says Chase. "It is an extremely important factor in ones overall health and it should not be overlooked."
Bright smile do's and dont's
For a hollywood smile, crunchy fruits and vegetables work best. They function as an abrasive scrub for your teeth and also stimulate the production of saliva, which helps to keep plaque from forming.
Dr. Chase's Do's and Don'ts
- Strawberries and oranges are both useful for polishing teeth. Rubbing an orange peel or a strawberry over your teeth, following by washing out your moth with water will get your noticeable whiter teeth after a few months.
- Dairy products such as yogurt, milk and cheese contain a lactic acid which may help protect teeth against decay. Hard cheeses are best for whitening since they help remove food particles as well.
- Other helpful fruits and veggies include apples, cauliflower, carrots and celery.
It's important to avoid stain-causing foods and substances as much as possible. A simple rule is any food which causes a stubborn laundry stain can stain teeth too. Brushing teeth or at least rinsing one's mouth with water after consuming these foods is a great way to help prevent staining. Foods to avoid include:
- Red wine
- Soy sauce
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