Teeth Are Always in Style
“She laughs at everything you say. Why? Because she has fine teeth.” —Ben Franklin
We’ve discussed your smile, now let’s talk teeth. Our perception of beauty often involves symmetry, and our teeth are all about that. Good teeth are associated with overall good health and well-being; they’re not just a cosmetic detail.
Brushing your teeth is one of the single most important things you can do to enhance your natural beauty. The dividing line between economic classes is often starkest between those who spend thousands of dollars on a gleaming smile and those who suffer and even die from preventable tooth decay. It’s important to start forming these habits at the youngest age possible and encourage your children or anyone else you know to likewise brush their teeth properly and often. Brushing, flossing, and rinsing are just a few of the ways you can take care of your teeth. Regular visits to a dentist are important too. Depending on where you live, programs may be available to help you afford dental care; also, some dentists will work with you on a payment plan or offer rates based on what you can afford to pay so you can get proper care for your teeth.
A wide variety of products are on the market that will help you keep your teeth clean, and whiteners to give you a brighter smile. I have tried some of these products myself. Several major brands, including Crest, Colgate, Equate, and Rembrandt make whitening kits and packs with tooth strips. These basic treatments vary in cost from about US$20 to US$60 and require that you place a sticky, tape-like strip across the top and bottom of your frontline teeth, which are visible when you smile. The chemicals in these treatments whiten (as in bleach) your teeth a few shades lighter, helping you feel more confident about your smile and making you happier knowing that the cup of coffee you drank in 2007 no longer shows up when you smile to greet your neighbor.
Depending on which products you choose, you can repeat the use of these whitening kits every three to six months as needed for maintenance. Some should be left on longer than others. When I was experimenting with these products, some treatments remained on for thirty minutes, and others for sixty minutes. Still others were used for a week or longer, so keep this in mind when you are shopping for a whitening solution. Numerous options are available.
As with any product that contains chemicals, some element of risk is involved. Your gums are sensitive, and over-the-counter whitening remedies are generally much less effective than what a dentist can provide. Of course, the cost difference between an at-home treatment and those done in an office can be hundreds or even thousands of dollars, as is the case with any health-related service. It is always safer to undergo these procedures when a dentist administers them.
The newest items on the market for tooth whitening are peroxide pens that you use on the visible areas of your teeth that show when you smile. Peroxide products can be tricky, however, because there is a such thing as too much of a good thing, and some products contain too much.
While these various products can offer convenience and some relief from dental imperfections, if you follow a simple hygienic routine and brush twice a day, using dental floss to get into the hard-to-reach areas, you will do wonders for your teeth, which in turn will contribute to a more beautiful you!
As for alignment, you can experiment with ways to help straighten out your teeth at home or let a dentist deal with it. A retainer is an easy and pain-free way to straighten slightly crooked teeth and add beauty to your smile.
You are in complete control of your oral health. Because of this, a part of you deep down may feel squeamish about visiting a dentist, not only because we’re afraid of the pain we might have to endure but because we fear being judged when we do go in. No one likes being looked down upon for neglecting to do something so basic as taking care of our teeth. But dentists typically are not judgmental, and you should not hesitate to get professional care for your teeth.
Take the time to take care of your teeth, and it will be time well spent on taking care of yourself. A confident smile is everything, and with all the facts you have now learned about smiling, you can give yourself the best smile possible.