White and healthy teeth are essential to presenting yourself well. When people look at a person’s face, one of the areas that immediately garners attention is the person’s smile. Having bright and healthy smiles adds tremendously to a person’s appearance. In fact, when people rate attractiveness, teeth have been shown to be the most important factor in finding someone attractive. Teeth are important to structure and support the face. They provide the focal point that our eyes gravitate towards. Often times the teeth set up the symmetry of the face.
It is clear that having good teeth is important to looking good. Steps to take in order to improve one’s smile are based on providing symmetry at the midline of the face. The most important tenet of making a smile more attractive is getting the two front teeth to look identical. Reshaping these teeth can provide an easy fix and make a smile more attractive. When a great discrepancy exists, crowns, veneers and/or orthodontics are necessary to improve a smile. Discussing your treatment needs with a qualified dentist is very important.
Assuming the shape and straightness of your teeth is not an issue, having a bright white smile is important. Making the proper diagnosis of why a patient’s teeth are not the proper color is an important part of a dental consult. The dentist should evaluate if the teeth are unattractive due to fluorosis, tetracycline stain, old and discolored fillings, stained teeth, cavities, or buildup on teeth. Some of these conditions require advanced dental techniques to restore to health.
A good cleaning by a licensed hygienist can remove stains and buildup. Fluorosis and tetracycline stain can be treated to some degree with at home whitening. Teeth that have wine and tea stains can be treated very well with at home whitening as well. At home whitening is performed by placing an oxidizing agent like carbamide peroxide in a carrier. These carriers can be worn for varying lengths of time until the desired result is achieved.
Whitening works by cleaning out dentinal tubules. Debris and stain is oxidized in the tooth there by enhancing the optical properties of teeth. The peroxide opens up these tubules and can cause sensitivity for a short period of time. While the teeth are being whitened, it is very important to avoid foods and drinks that stain teeth.
Many products at the drug store advertise as whitening. Most of these products work by decreasing stain on the outside of teeth. These products can be beneficial to maintain your whitening results. To keep white teeth, it is important to avoid foods that commonly stain your teeth. Red wines, teas, coffee, colas, some fruits and other foods can stain your teeth. Additionally, tobacco is a common cause of dark and discolored teeth. Using a straw greatly decreases the discoloration your teeth.
There are many options to make your smile more attractive and healthy. It is very important to sequence your treatment appropriately. Before beginning working on making your smile more attractive, talk with your dentist and make sure your smile is the outward reflection of your healthy mouth.
Alex Krempa, D.M.D.
6350 Airport Blvd.
Mobile, Alabama 36608