10 Hot Healthy Ways To Get A Whiter Smile
They say smile and the whole world smiles with you. With that in mind, we quizzed Flora Chigwedere from The Covent Garden Dental Spa on how to have a healthier, brighter smile.
1. First of all is it really necessary to floss?
“Very necessary – the floss removes the bacteria from in between the teeth. If you leave bacteria, you risk decay or gum disease. The best time to floss is before brushing – it helps dislodge the plaque and bacteria before brushing flushed the loosened debris out.”
2. Is an electric toothbrush better than manual?
Yes, if it’s used properly. The electric vibrates and resonates at frequencies that help dislodge plaque and bacteria. Using an electric toothbrush also prevents overzealous brushing which could damage the teeth and helps reduce staining.
3. What toothpaste and toothbrush do you personally use?
I use the Philips Sonicare Rechargeable Toothbrush and Sensodyne Repair and Protect Toothpaste.
4. What’s the most anti-aging treatment women can have when it comes to their teeth?
Focus on the gums. Pink, health gums are a sign of youth and good hygiene sessions keep them looking like this, keep the teeth bright and white and these all contribute to a more youthful look. Visit your dentist every six months. If you have impeccable oral hygiene and no risk factors, then you could stretch that to once a year, but I would still advise you to see a hygienist every 6 months.
5. So we know coffee and red wine are no friends of our teeth but is there anything else we might not know ruins our teeth?
Yes juicing! It can damage the teeth due to the high acid content wearing away the enamel. I always advise my patients to juice more vegetables than fruit as veggies tend to be less acidic. The period of time you leave after juicing is very important too: wait at least 20 minutes to allow the enamel to remineralise before brushing your teeth.
6. What about at-home whitening kits? Good? Bad? Helpful or useless?
Yes, they do work, they just take longer to achieve the desired result and require the discipline to use them consistently.
7. Bad breath is a bummer – what causes it and how can we stop it?
Bad breath is linked to a build up of calculus and plaque in the mouth from ineffective brushing and not flossing as well as bad eating habits e.g garlic or spicy diet, smoking, alcohol, fasting or even dehydration and some health problems like diabetes or medication which dry out the mouth. Seeing a hygienist frequently will help to keep the mouth as bacteria free as possible. And floss, a lot.
8. Chewing gum gets a bad rep but we’ve heard it’s actually good for our mouths? True or false?
True, it’s very good. It helps to increase the flow of saliva, helping to flush out plaque, which attracts bacteria.
9. What’s the biggest innovation in teeth/mouth health that you’re seeing at the moment?
A few years ago, everyone wanted white teeth, now people are more interested in having their teeth cleaned, which is a paradigm shift – health comes first.
10. What’s the one thing women ignore?
Bleeding gums are a sign something is wrong and should not be ignored. If you had abnormal bleeding from any other part of your body you’d run to the GP. It’s the same with bleeding gums.
by Evie Leathem