While brushing and flossing will help keep teeth clean and free of plaque, they may not prevent dark stains from forming on teeth. Many things you do or don't do can cause stains to form and in some cases stains are a sign of an underlying issue that may require the attention of a dentist. Dark stains can make you feel self conscious, so learning how to remove them is essential in keeping your mouth and appearance looking great.
Things You'll Need
- Mouth rinse (with whitening power)
- Toothpaste (with whitening power)
- Whitening strips
- Baking soda
Make an appointment and see your dentist. Dark stains in teeth can be signs of a more serious matter such as a dead root or internal rotting. To insure your stains are just stains and nothing worse, have your dentist take a look. She can also give you tips on what you might be doing to make the stains worse.
Limit or cutback on any foods, drinks or activities you may be doing that can cause and increase the appearance of dark stains. This includes smoking, drinking coffee and other dark drinks like soda, eating excessive amounts of sugar and not brushing. Change these behaviors or modify by brushing after you partake in any of them.
Maintain a good oral hygiene regime. This means brushing in the morning and at night for two minutes, using a mouth rinse once a day and flossing once daily. Use rinses and toothpastes that contain whitening products specially formulated to help fight stains and whiten teeth.
Clean your teeth once a week with baking soda and salt. Mix about one tablespoon of baking soda with half a tablespoon of salt and enough warm water to create a paste. Apply the mixture to teeth with a brush in gentle strokes. This treatment is sort of like exfoliating for the teeth and it'll help whiten while removing tough residue that may have built up over the week.
Purchase over-the-counter whitening strips at your local drug store and begin using them daily as instructed. Over-the-counter whitening strips contain a concentrated amount of whitening bleach solution that is safe for home use and are relatively effective.
Continue with these steps for two to three months. Removing stains is a slow process, but if you stick with the regime, it can be done successfully. If after two to three months your stains are still there, see your dentist again to setup a professional whitening session.
Tips & Warnings
- If you can't resist some of the teeth staining habits discussed try a few easy methods of partaking that will cause less staining. For coffee or dark liquids drink them through a straw to limit the contact they have with teeth. For smoking try a whitening toothpaste with tar-fighting power. If you feel you aren't properly brushing, use a timer in the bathroom to show you how long you need to be brushing and remember to get your teeth from all angles with your brush.
- Photo Credit Tripod/Digital Vision/Getty Images
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