Whiten Your Teeth, Brighten your Smile

whiten your teeth

Is it one of your New Year’s resolutions to whiten your teeth for a brighter smile?  Try doing it naturally and inexpensively before you sign up for the alternative methods. A little extra oral hygiene can work wonders.

Foods That Stain Your Teeth

Many common food and drinks that we consume daily stain our teeth.  These culprits include red wine, coffee, tea, beets, and red juices like cranberry, grape, and cherry.   When you eat or drink these stain causers, try these tips to reduce the damage:

  • eat cheese before you sip on red wine.  The cheese will coat your teeth making them less susceptible to stains
  • eat more leafy greens like spinach and kale as the minerals they contain protect our teeth from stains
  • rinse your mouth and teeth with water for 3o seconds after consuming staining foods or drinks
  • do NOT brush your teeth immediately after eating or drinking teeth stainers as brushing can push the stain and acids into the enamel of your teeth.  Instead, rinse as indicated above, then brush after 30 minutes.
  • dilute the staining power of coffee and tea with milk or other whiteners
  • avoid soda as the acid wears out the enamel on your teeth making them more susceptible to stains

Remove Stains, Plaque and Bacteria

If you notice your teeth are yellow, try these tricks to remove stains, plaque, and even lingering bacteria. Removing or discouraging bacterial growth will also freshen your breath:

  • chew (sugarless) gum as the saliva that gum creates can remove plaque and bacteria
  • increase your intake of nuts and seeds as they scrape plaque from your teeth and massage your gums
  • eat more crunchy vegetables like celery as it also removes plaque from teeth
  • rubbing teeth with the white side of orange peel can remove tartar
  • dip your brush in baking soda before brushing, once per week
  • rub a mint leaf over your teeth to remove plaque and protect from future stains

Brushing and Flossing to Whiten Your Teeth

Poor brushing habits can result in tooth loss and even heart problems.  Use these guidelines to avoid these troublesome issues:

  • use a soft toothbrush with rounded bristles
  • brush your teeth a minimum of twice a day
  • brush your teeth before breakfast
  • change your toothbrush every 3 months or sooner if it is frayed
  • floss your teeth daily to remove food and bacteria from the hard to reach areas between your teeth.  Bacteria left in these tight spaces will lead to inflammation which causes the health issues above.
  • avoid mouthwash that contains alcohol.  Studies have shown it to cause oral cancer

Start the new year off right with a brighter, whiter smile!

whiten your teeth

Get a Handle on Ebola!

These words of wisdom about the EBOLA situation come from a nurse in Corpus Christi, Texas who just happens to be my sister.  Never one to beat around the bush, she hits the nail on the head here….

Get a handle on it!  Infections (viral and bacterial) have been around for a looooooonnng time and have caused many deaths before Ebola. Infection control is NOT new to any hospital or other health care facility. The problem is people not following protocol. Maybe because they are busy, forget, or are just plain lazy, but seldom because they lack the education. Infection control is 101 (basic learning) in health care. Be on the watch ….. in health care facilities, in grocery stores and at your neighbor’s….for good infection control practices and if you see something like …..people not washing their hands, using antibacterial or hand sanitizer, not covering their mouths when coughing or sneezing, not disposing of used tissues, not washing their hands after restroom breaks, not using gloves when providing care, etc….. speak up and steer clear!  Don’t ever feel like you are “covered” and disease proof, even when you suspect that you or your government knows how the virus or bacteria is transferred from one person to another.

I am not meaning to come across as peeved and am not placing blame on the nurses. Just saying that we can’t depend on others for infection control and need to watch out for ourselves too. Obviously if this infected guy got over here and sat in an emergency room twice and waited several days for engineering controls, hazard suits and workplace controls to be put in place several people were potentially exposed. Take personal precautions like staying away from others body fluids, blood or other, keep your hands clean and away from your face, eyes etc and protect yourself! If the govt isn’t going to stop infected or exposed individuals from coming into our communities then each of us need to be aware and proactive in our own protection.

Also just because CDC or the president say an infection isn’t airborne doesn’t mean we can’t protect ourselves. Like anything they say…doesn’t make it the whole truth.