5 Ways To Make Your Smile Look Better
I’ve been thinking about it for years and I’m finally doing it. I’m getting my teeth straightened. It has been over 30 years since I had braces and, in that time, my teeth have shifted quite a bit. However, I’m not getting braces this time. My dentist offers Invisalign so it has been much easier to get started.
As we age, our teeth look older, too. Even if you once had a smile worth showing off, time has likely taken its toll on your teeth. Drinking coffee, tea, soda, and wine stains your pearly whites. Grinding your teeth and “forgetting” to floss cause more damage. But there’s good news! According to Men’s Health, these five fixes can help reverse age-related damage and make your smile look great again:
- Stay on schedule – Brush your teeth twice a day using a toothpaste with fluoride and floss at least once a day. Don’t forget to see your dentist every six months.
- Protect your gums – Cosmetic dentist Dr. Marc Lowenberg warns that gingivitis, caused by plaque buildup, inflames the gums. Make sure you’re brushing the gum line, where plaque likes to linger.
- Slow the grind – Many people grind their teeth. Doing it habitually can wear teeth down and lead to those dreaded root canals. Your dentist can fit you with a night guard to protect your teeth, but it’s going to cost you between $300 and $1,000. My wife wears one every night and it works. You can get a less expensive over-the-counter guard at the drugstore but it won’t be as good as the one from your dentist.
- Whiten up – Coffee, tea, sodas, red wine and smoking are just some of the things that can stain teeth. To undo the damage, there are products you can try at home and dentists have more powerful options available in their offices. Cosmetic dentist Dr. Michael Apa recommends getting professional cleanings and in-house whitening treatments done back-to-back every six months and then using at-home kits to maintain results.
- Embrace braces – You can try traditional braces or clear aligners like I’m getting. Another alternative to having a mouth full of metal is lingual braces, which are brackets on the backs of your teeth. Whichever option you choose, make sure you get them from a professional who can track your progress and help you get the smile you want.