maintain teeth whitening

How To Maintain Your New Smile After Teeth Whitening

When asked what one thing they’d most like to change about their smile, most people will say “whiter teeth.” Even though unattractive teeth may actually be in good health, many people will still judge you by your smile. So maintaining a brilliant white smile after a teeth whitening treatment can be a challenge.

Having a bright smile will improve your self-confidence and self-esteem. It’s amazing how something as simple as a teeth whitening treatment can affect your mood and relationships.

There are certain lifestyle choices and foods and beverages that can discolor your teeth if you regularly indulge in them. So it’s very easy to end up where you started, which can be very discouraging. 

Maintaining Your Results

One key factor in how long your whitening results will last comes down to what you do in the first 24 hours after your treatment. Here are some tips:

  • If possible, stop smoking. At the very least, stick with vaping and limit your activity.
  • Don’t eat foods that leave stains behind, such as chocolate, certain kinds of fruit, etc.
  • Avoid drinking beverages like tea, coffee, red wine and other dark-colored drinks.

A good rule to remember is that if something can stain a white t-shirt, it will stain your teeth.

How Staining Happens

Many dark-colored beverages stain teeth because they contain a high amount of something called tannins. Tannins are compounds in these beverages that give them their pigment and color.

Soft drinks can even contribute to stained teeth. Most of them are highly acidic, which can eat away at your tooth enamel, setting you up for discoloration when your teeth are more vulnerable to stains.

For the first 24 hours after your teeth whitening treatment, avoid teeth-staining foods for as long as possible. This will have a significant impact upon the length of your results. If you immediately return to teeth-staining activities, you’ll begin noticing that your teeth start dulling within only three months.

If you maintain good teeth whitening habits, you should enjoy results of up to one year or more.

Will a professional teeth whitening treatment damage my tooth enamel?

No. A professional treatment will not damage your teeth. However, if you whiten your teeth at home with over-the-counter products, you could wind up damaging your tooth enamel. 

Considering that teeth whitening treatments are not typically covered by insurance, it’s a good idea to maintain habits that help you keep your results as long as possible.

The Bottom Line

Having a whiter smile is a tremendous confidence boost for almost anyone. Having stained teeth and a dull smile can make it appear that you are older than your actual age and reveal any unhealthy habits that you indulge in.

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