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How to get a stainless smile

A bright, white smile is something that takes years off your appearance and acts as a confidence booster. Remove stains from your teeth by following these simple tips...

india Updated: May 12, 2010 18:20 IST
Dr Anjali Mukerjee
Dr Anjali Mukerjee
Hindustan Times

SmileA bright, white smile is something that takes years off your appearance and acts as a confidence booster. However, poor eating habits, cigarette smoking and chewing tobacco can lead to stains on the teeth, cause decay and steal the charm vested in your smile. The best way to keep your teeth white and in top shape is by avoiding foods that cause these stains.

Potentially harmful
Black coffee: Coffee is a deadly staining agent. As an alternative, try a cup of mild coffee diluted with milk or cream, or drink through a straw.

Tea: Tea can stain the teeth. Instead of black tea, opt for green, white and herbal teas, which, being lighter in colour, won’t stain your teeth as much.

Red wine: The acids in wine create rough spots and grooves that not only discolour your teeth but also cause stains to penetrate deeper. Opt for white wine or rinse your mouth with water after consumption.

Colas: Dark sodas, including diet, are harmful to teeth because of their sugar and phosphoric acid content. Also, cold carbonated beverages contract the teeth, making them more porous and more susceptible to stain. Opt for fresh lime juice or jal jeera with your food. And if you still feel like drinking the Colas, use a straw.

How to remove the stains?
Good dental hygiene: Brush your teeth immediately after meals or at least thrice a day. Else gargle with water after tea and coffee to prevent discolouration.

Tooth floss: Floss your teeth regularly to remove food particles wedged together between teeth.

Sip using a straw: Sipping colas, tea, and coffee with a straw will reduce their contact with the teeth.

Eat crunchy foods: Eating apples, pear, lettuce or carrots makes the fibre in them rub against the teeth and prevents food particles from accumulating in the gaps.

Baking soda and salt: A mixture of equal parts of salt and baking soda is a natural bleaching and antibacterial agent. Before brushing with toothpaste, dip the surface of your brush in this mixture.

Teeth whitening products: Teeth whitening gels and strips are most convenient. But prolonged use can make your teeth brittle.

Visit to dentist: Visit your dentist at least once in six months to prevent any tooth decay. They know the best about what form of bleaching will work for us if our teeth become discoloured.

First Published: May 10, 2010 14:01 IST