Eat right, keep your teeth white–Prevent stains and discolored teeth
It’s natural to want to look good. A bright smile is certainly part of that picture. Unfortunately many social gatherings present a staggering number of food and drink options that are contrary to maintaining a white smile. Learn these tips for white teeth, despite your social engagements.
Stop discoloring and staining. Load your arsenal now with a bag of tricks to help compensate. Choose carefully and you may stop or even prevent stains. In some cases you can reverse staining from indulgent social gatherings.
Know your foe
Understanding the most likely culprits at risk for causing staining to tooth enamel helps you make an informed decision on foods to avoid. You can bet that a food that stains carpeting or clothing will also stain porous enamel. Acidic foods, tomatoes for example, make enamel softer. Soft enamel stains more readily than dense, hard enamel.
Foods that stain include, wine (red and white) blackberries, pomegranates, cranberry juice, cola, plums, blueberries, curries, vinegars (particularly dark ones,) tomato and tomato based foods. Potentially any other dark colored food with staining powers will also leave stains on your teeth.
Indirect staining -vs- direct staining
Foods can stain teeth because of their pigment. Chemical reactions contribute to staining also. Some chemical reactions from food, softens or weakens enamel . Foods that stain teeth through some combo of deep pigments and corrosive action pose an even bigger risk.
Armor for your teeth
Not all “whitening” foods directly whiten teeth. A number of foods help whiten your smile by fortifying enamel. Enamel, the hardest substance in the human body, has a porous surface. The porous surface makes teeth vulnerable to absorbing and staining causing foods we eat.
Foods that protect enamel:
- walnuts, almonds and other seeds and nuts
- sesame oil and virgin coconut oil
- shiitake mushrooms
- raw onion and garlic
- herbs, particularly basil
These foods neutralize plaque, neutralize corrosive foods, promote saliva or remineralize enamel.
Foods that erase stains:
- nuts and seeds
Fortunately all of these foods are delicious and readily available. Keep teeth white and smiles sparkling with routine brushing, flossing, and cleanings with your dentist. Add these foods in for the best defense against stains and the best offense of keeping teeth strong.