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Friday, March 13, 2015

Teeth Whitening 101

Some of you may have seen the picture above on my Instagram and you might be wondering what I'm holding and why is it glowing?! No worries, I'll get to that!

But first, as most of you already know, oral hygiene is extremely important. Once you lose your baby teeth and your adult teeth are all grown in - those are the only set you get, so it is important to properly care for them. Unless you want to end up with dentures, and hey, if that's your prerogative, go for it, I'm not stopping you! Do you, boo boo. 

I had clear braces when I was younger and after I got them off, my main goal was to keep a healthy, bright smile. Here's what I do to achieve a natural bright white smile. The first step is flossing. This is super important when it comes to oral hygiene as it reaches all the plaque you can't reach when brushing your teeth. Particles of food get stuck in your teeth all the time, sometimes without you knowing. So flossing is huge! I mean unless you like food just chillin' in your teeth, then you're good. 

After I floss, I use hydrogen peroxide. Yes, I know it sounds odd and gross - which it is, but this is really where the whitening comes from. For those of you that are still a little skeptical on this part, you can visit this website that explains all of this different things hydrogen peroxide can be used for, giving you a list of both benefits and negatives about the product. A fun fact for all of you is that hydrogen peroxide is used in the whitening strips. It is one of the major ingredients in them that whiten your teeth. Instead of spending $50 on whitening strips, grab yourself a $3 bottle of peroxide at the drug store *super save*!

To use the hydrogen peroxide, I typically take a cap or two full and swish it in my mouth for about 30 seconds to a minute. When I don't feel like having that bitter taste on my tongue, I'll take a Q-tip and dip it into the peroxide and almost paint it onto each individual tooth and leave it on for about a minute. Once I'm done with that I'll rinse. *Caution* I only do this part about once a week and sometimes once every other week as the hydrogen peroxide can damage the enamel on your teeth if used too often.

After rinsing out the peroxide with water, I'll use mouth wash to get the bitter taste out of my mouth. Lastly, I brush my teeth really well to get all of the plaque off of the surfaces.

As for the bright blue light in my picture above, that is something I use about twice a month. It is a product from Whitening Lightning called "Dial A Smile". It reatails for $99 but they typically have really great coupon codes. I believe I got mine for $29 during the holidays. You get a kit with the light (as shown in the picture), whitening gel in a syringe, and a whitening color wheel to see the difference in your smile. I use a Q-tip and paint the gel onto my teeth and then hold the light up to my mouth for about 15-20 minutes. I don't usually see a HUGE difference, maybe a shade whiter than my initial color. If you're looking for immediate results, this isn't for you. I would suggest my other method above. This is more of an over-time-results method. But they do also have a whitening pen that I heard works WONDERS, so I'm anxious to get my hands on that.


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