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The Secrets to Whiter Teeth

Think you know everything about getting white teeth? Think again! Having white teeth goes well beyond picking up a pack of whitening toothpaste or getting a whitening treatment done at your dentist.

There are so many factors that can impact the color of your teeth, and how your teeth look can have a big impact on what people think about you. In fact, having whiter teeth has been proven to make you more attractive as a prospective partner as well as more employable, not to mention making you appear younger. So what are the secrets to dazzling white teeth? Let’s explore some factors that impact the colour of your teeth.

Watch Your Diet

What you eat and drink can have a pretty big influence on the color of your teeth. While those morning cups of coffee might seem like they do not have any effect, over time they will stain your teeth pretty badly. Even if you use a whitening toothpaste, foods that stain your teeth can counteract the positive effects. You should try to avoid having too much of the following foods and drink:

  • Coffee
  • Dark Tea
  • Red Wine
  • Colored Soda
  • Fruit Juices
  • Colored Candy and Popsicles
  • Berries
  • Beets
  • Curry
  • Tomato Sauce
  • Dressings

While that might seem like a long list, it’s just a guideline of the biggest teeth-staining offenders. Everything is better in moderation, and often avoiding some of these super-staining foods will lead you to find alternatives you might enjoy even more. Thinking before you eat or drink something can help you to avoid piling on unsightly surface stains.

[Check out: Snacker’s Guide to Cleaner Teeth]

Watch Your Medications

Did you know that certain medicines can stain your teeth? It’s a pretty frustrating side effect, but your doctor might be able to help. LiveScience calls out some of the biggest culprits, “During adulthood, chlorhexidine, an antiseptic used in prescription-strength mouthwash to treat gingivitis, can cause discolorations. Likewise, the acne-fighting drug minocycline, a derivative of tetracycline, stains teeth. Chemotherapy directed at the head and neck and chemotherapy drugs can also result in intrinsic stains. Even relatively common drugs, such as antihistamines, Albuterol and blood pressure medications, can sometimes yellow teeth.”

If you notice a big change in the color of your teeth after starting a new course of medicine, then it might be the culprit. Ask your doctor if they can check and make sure your dosage is correct if the discoloration becomes a big problem.

Watch Your Brushing Routine


Image: smileconcepts

The biggest secret to keeping your teeth white is something that you should be doing regularly anyway. Brushing your teeth won’t just keep them healthy, it will also keep them whiter. The Australian Dental Association recommends that you brush your teeth two times each day for about two minutes in order to achieve the maximum benefits.

You also need to make sure you are consistently using a clean toothbrush. This means remembering to swap out your toothbrush to keep cleaning effectively. It is recommended that you change your toothbrush every three to four months, and sometimes even more frequently. Your toothbrush is the tool that you use to keep your teeth clean, so make sure it is always in great condition.

Brushing your teeth consistently will help keep them healthier and whiter in the long-term.

Cut Out Tobacco

If you use tobacco products, this recommendation is probably easier said than done. But consider the huge impact it will have on your health and appearance. If you want to motivate yourself more, take a fraction of the money that you would typically spend on cigarettes and pick up a teeth whitening solution like strips or professional whitening gel kits. Once you see how big of a difference having whiter teeth can make (not to mention the huge array of other health benefits experienced by anyone who gives up smoking), you will probably have a harder time justifying going back to smoking.

Keep It Up!

Maintaining white teeth is a daily process. You need to take exceptional care of your teeth to ensure they are not just sparkling white but also healthy and strong throughout your life.

[Check out: So You Want to Hold onto Your Teeth?]

Keeping an eye on these four major problem areas can help you do just that, so start paying attention to your diet, medications, oral hygiene, and cut out tobacco. You’ll be surprised by how quickly you see positive results!

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Look After Your Teeth – The Easter Bunny Won’t Do it For You!

So many holidays involve a bit of indulgence. This is especially true for Easter, a holiday where adorable sweets shaped like cute animals are sold pretty much everywhere you look. Combine this with big meals spent with friends and family, and the Easter season is rife with ways for you to damage your teeth. You want to enjoy the festivities, but you also want to stay healthy – right? Well luckily, with just a bit of attention and planning you will be able to enjoy the Easter holiday without making a negative impact on your teeth.

Sugar Can Be Damaging

Since you were young, you will have been told not to eat too many sweet treats, otherwise you will damage your teeth. You might have brushed it off as just your parents trying to get you to stop eating so much candy, but do you ever wonder if there is some truth to this age-old saying? With Easter baskets overflowing with candy and sugar, you should probably face the reality that these candies really can do some damage.

[Read more about The Effects of Sugar on Teeth]

Rethink Sugary Drinks’ website explains how sugar damages teeth. “Tooth decay is caused by bacteria in the mouth using sugar from foods and drinks to produce acids that dissolve and damage the teeth.” The longer the sugar sits on your teeth, the more damage it can do to the heath of your mouth.

The science backs it up as a report from BMC Public Health shows, “only 2% of urban and rural Nigerians of all ages including the elderly, whose permanent teeth had been exposed to diets for half a century.” This is a huge difference from the USA where “92% of USA adults aged 20 to 64 have experienced dental caries.” The sugar intake seems to have a large impact on tooth decay, and when you are celebrating a holiday that is in large part about sugary treats, you should certainly pay more attention to make sure you are not doing permanent damage.

Keep Your Teeth Healthy

  • Brush Every Day – As always, having a solid dental care routine is extremely critical. You need to keep your teeth healthy day in and day out, which means brushing regularly. It is especially important to brush your teeth before bed to wipe away all of the bacteria that has built up in your mouth throughout the day. Otherwise, it will just sit on the top of your teeth, causing more and more damage. You should also make sure you remember to change your toothbrush every few months to keep your teeth clean and healthy.
  • Floss – If you are eating lots of sugary treats, you need to make sure you get rid of the excess food that is sitting in your mouth. Otherwise, as you saw above, you could create a really damaging situation for your teeth. Keep your smile healthy by getting all of the extra bits and pieces of your holiday sweets out from in between your teeth. Flossing can help dislodge anything you miss while brushing, and help keep your teeth from being damaged by invisible food hidden between them.
  • Avoid Staining Foods – Everyone loves to take pictures at events. If your teeth are stained because of your holiday foods, you might not be happy with the results you see when you look at the pictures. One sure way to avoid this problem is to steer clear of some of the most famous teeth-staining culprits. WebMD identifies food dyes as some of the worst offenders saying, “If you've ever sucked on a lollipop and found that your tongue and teeth turned blue, you've seen the effects. Dentists suggest that you avoid brightly colored candy, ice pops, and sweetened drinks.” Since all of these foods are really popular during Easter, it’s best to pay attention to the sweets that you pick up to celebrate the holiday. Those cute bunny-shaped treats might just be creating tough stains on your teeth.
  • Whiten and Brighten – If you find your holiday treats have left you with a dull, stained smile then you are going to need a quick solution to get your dazzling white teeth back. Luckily, the Pearly Whites Easter sale has just begun – save $$ off your favourite teeth whitening kits.

Enjoying the holidays is great, but always remember to take excellent care of your teeth. Neglecting them will cause you issues for years to come, not to mention be a huge pain (quite literally)!

[Read more about lifelong dental care: So You Want to Hold onto Your Teeth?]

By watching what you eat and taking good care of your teeth, you will be able to celebrate Easter happily for many years to come without fear of tooth pain or damage.

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Support National Smile Day and Spread Some Joy 1st April

Image: www.humourfoundation.com.au

Without a doubt, laughter is one of the best forms of medicine in the world. Laughing is about more than just the temporary endorphin rush we get when we find something funny. It can have a significant impact on our health and well-being. This fact is even supported by the Mayo clinic, who explain how laughing has a lasting and positive impact on your immune system, “… positive thoughts can actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses.” The more you laugh, the less ill you might actually be, giving you more reasons than ever to tickle your funny bone.

This is exactly why April 1st is National Smile Day in Australia. The Humour Foundation established National Smile Day as a way to fundraise for their laughter-based charity. While the organization might just sound like fun and games, it’s actually an incredible group with a very important mission.

What the Humour Foundation Does

No one wants to spend time in the hospital, least of all children. Still, at an age when they should be playing on the playground with their friends, many children are unfortunately confined to hospitals battling severe and often life-threatening illnesses. The time they spend at the doctor can be intimidating and scary, and watching their parents try to cope with the anxiety of having a sick child can be even tougher to deal with for a young child. Taking care of a sick child can be expensive, stressful, and chaotic time for a family, and often children are extremely perceptive and understand that something is wrong.

Instead of focusing on their illnesses all day every day, the Humour Foundation helps to bring some joy to the kids’ days through what they call diversion therapy. “Each year, Clown Doctors help lighten the serious side of hospital for more than 135,000 people in the hospital community through diversion therapy – parodying the hospital routine and with laughter, jokes and songs for sick children.” The impact that this group has on the lives and spirits is immeasurable.

Creating hilarious interactions between clown doctors and patients can bring a sense of lightness to the hospital stay. Even more, these clown doctors help to remove some of the fear and mystery that come from a lot of doctors’ visits. Children often don’t know what to expect, or why they need to be inside a checkup room all of the time. The Clown Doctors put a humorous spin on these visits by creating parody checkups and routine procedures. Making light of what the children go through in a respectful manner means the kids can take a step back from the stress they go through every day and get to just be kids.

Why It’s an Important Mission

If you have ever been to the doctor or stayed at a hospital you know they can be pretty stressful and depressing places. The mood only seems to dip when you have little children hooked up to complex machines and families hoping for positive outcomes. While laughter can improve your immune system, it can also do many other incredible things, including helping improve recall and memory. This benefit seems to be extremely deep-rooted, and makes another good case for children to laugh more after all, they’re still growing.

The values of the Humour Foundation is to, “go in with an open heart; play, with respect; connect with compassion; and uplift the spirit.” Essentially, these clown doctors work to infuse joy into an otherwise depressing situation and try to change the way children view their doctor visits.

How You Can Help

To support this wonderful mission, you have a few options. One way to ensure that the clown doctors can continue to bring joy to children is by supporting a clown doctor for one month. If you want to get a group together and make an even bigger impact, you could even organize one of their Fun-Raising events. These events include ideas like trivia nights and sports competitions or even something a bit more whimsical like a funny hat competition. The important bit is that everyone who participates makes a small donation that will go directly to support the Humour Foundation’s mission. You can even offer some prizes to increase the incentive to participate. If you need help planning an event, the Clown Doctors are more than happy to help assist you. Even better, if you have a great idea for a Fun-Raising event, they would be excited to hear about it. In the end, the point of your event is to put a smile on a child’s face, and what is more worthwhile than that?

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World Oral Health Day

Every March 20th, people across the globe celebrate World Oral Health Day. It’s an awareness day that encourages everyone around the world to keep not just their teeth healthy but to maintain the health of their mouth as well.

The Basics of World Oral Health Day

March 20th isn’t an arbitrary date to celebrate oral health. In fact, there’s a lot of meaning behind the day. According to the World Oral Health Day website, the date was chosen to symbolize the fact that senior citizens are considered healthy if they have 20 of their own teeth by the end of their lives, everyone should have 20 baby teeth when they are kids, and adults should have 32 teeth and no cavities. As you can see, there are plenty of reasons that 3/20 is the perfect day to celebrate having a healthy mouth.

How Can You Celebrate World Oral Health Day?

There are some simple ways to hold your own World Oral Health Day celebrations, as well as some great events that are held to honor the day. If you want to celebrate with others, you should look into community events that are being held in your area. Many dental practices have special events and screenings that are held on March 20th to mark the day. For example, you could attend a lecture on oral health care hosted by the Australian Dental Industry Association.

If there isn’t anything particular scheduled in your area, here are some ideas to help you properly celebrate World Oral Health Day.

  • Schedule a dental checkup – Since the health of your mouth can be a good indicator of your overall health, it is best to get regular checkups. What better day than March 20th to schedule a visit with your dentist to ensure that your mouth and teeth are healthy. Be sure to wish them a happy World Oral Health Day while you are having your checkup!
  • Donate to a charity – There are many great charities out there that focus on oral health and helping people to get access to the dental care that they need. These charities are varied and have different purposes and visions. It is a good idea to do some research on the charity to make sure you agree with their purpose and the way they allocate the money you donate. Once you find the perfect oral health charity, you could potentially be providing someone with life changing access to a dental professional or a way to keep their mouth’s healthy all year round.
  • Refresh your supplies – You might think you are doing a decent job keeping your teeth clean, but are you really doing enough? After all, you want to keep your teeth healthy and strong for as long as possible. Things like cavities, cracked teeth, and even losing teeth can cause major pain and may even require you to get dentures in the future. Keeping your mouth healthy requires commitment and care, as well as a few simple tools. Since it is World Oral Health Day, why not go to your local pharmacy and pick out a few new supplies? Get yourself a fresh toothbrush, some floss, and maybe even a new mouthwash or rinse if you are so inclined. Often, people forget to buy new dental care equipment, and then find themselves without floss when they need it, or reusing a toothbrush until the bristles are frayed and ineffective. Equipping yourself with the tools you need to keep your mouth healthy is a great way to make sure you celebrate the holiday right.
  • Upgrade your smile – If you already have the basics down, why not go for a little upgrade? Talk to your dentist about teeth whitening solutions that are suitable for you. They can check to tell if your teeth are healthy and ready to be whitened. You could also opt for a whitening kit that you can use at home and still get professional level results. Celebrate the day by getting stunning white teeth that could boost your confidence and have you smiling for months to come!

Choose any one (or even several) of these ways to make sure your mouth is as healthy as possible. Also, it is important not to let the health of your mouth be something you only think about every March 20th and then forget about until the next World Oral Health Day rolls around. A commitment to oral health is an every day obligation, and one that you really should take seriously no matter how healthy you are or what your age is. A healthy mouth can be a way for your doctors to assess the rest of your health, so make sure you take care of those teeth and gums!

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Celebrate National Dentist Day

National Dentist Day

 

You may never have heard about National Dentist Day which falls on March 6th. At first, it might seem odd to celebrate this medical profession, especially as so many people unfortunately fear going into the dentist office. However, a little reflection on just how much your dentist does for you will show you how much they deserve to be acknowledged and recognized for all they do.

 

What Is National Dentist Day?

Becoming a dentist is a very respected career choice, and requires a lot of hard work and studying. While it might seem like being a dentist is a fairly new profession, in fact, the first dentist in recorded history was an Egyptian named Hesy Ra, who is thought to have lived and practiced his dentistry in Egypt around 2600 BCE. However, the French surgeon Pierre Fuachard, known as the “Father of Modern Dentistry” didn’t appear until 1723.

 

While the profession is extremely old, it has evolved greatly as time has gone on and medical technology progresses. Dentists devote their time and brainpower to developing new and improved ways to take care of our teeth.

 

Why Celebrate Your Dentist?

A dentist does an extremely important job. Have you ever had any tooth pain or discomfort, or oral health issues? If you have, you probably know just how painful they can be and how all you want is for the pain to go away. Who do you turn to but your friendly neighborhood dentist? Your dentist is there to help you in these emergency situations should they arise, with helpful and pain relieving medical treatments.

 

Dentists are also there for you when things aren’t quite so bad. Your dentist helps to make sure your teeth are healthy and when you’re young they ensure they are growing properly. If it looks like you might need braces to keep your teeth straight and prevent issues, they can refer you to an orthodontist. From the time you get your first tooth and on to the rest of your life, you rely on your dentist for guidance and assistance with all of your dental health needs. Doesn’t that deserve a bit of a celebration?

 

How Can You Celebrate?

For one thing, you should keep your teeth clean and healthy! Don’t give your dentist unnecessary hard work, instead, make sure they can take a bit of a well-earned break by giving them a simple job at your next checkup. Not to mention, taking especially good care of your teeth is a gift to yourself as well. Having healthy, strong teeth starts with keeping them clean.

 

You can also celebrate by getting yourself a special treat to help make your smile even better. A lot of people enjoy getting whitening kits or treatments to boost the dazzling white color of their teeth. That can be a great way to celebrate the excellent health of your teeth, all while praising your dentist for giving you such a healthy canvas to whiten!

 

If you really want to celebrate National Dentist Day, then schedule yourself an appointment this March 6th. Call your dentist’s office today to see if they can fit you in on the special day. It would be a nice gesture to get your dentist a little thank you card. After all, everyone deserves a little token of gratitude for their hard work!

 

Famous Dentists

Some famous (or infamous) people you might not expect were also trained dentists. Here is a list of some surprising celebrities who were also experts in the dental field.

 

  • Paul Revere – He did a lot more than just warn the troops about the British; Paul Revere was also a dentist! Apparently he trained under John Baker who is reported to be America’s first dentist.
  • John Henry “Doc” Holliday – Yes, he fought at the O.K. Corral, but he was also a trained dentist who practiced in Atlanta for a time.
  • Edgar Buchanan – Have you ever watched Green Acres or Petticoat Junction? Then you might be familiar with popular actor Edgar Buchanan. It seems he was a lot more than just a successful television actor, and he actually started out as a dentist.
  • Jim Lonborg – Jim was a famous baseball pitcher who played Major League Baseball for several teams in the 1960s and 1970s. After he retired from playing baseball, he went to Tufts University School of Dental Medicine and has been a practicing dentist ever since.

 

So as you see, it’s always worth taking a trip to the dentist. As well as ensuring your teeth are in tip top condition, you never know who you might meet!

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