Wednesday, 29 July 2020

Taking better care of my teeth




I like to think I take care of my whole body well, thanks to my love of beauty, but one part of my body that can often be forgotten about is my mouth.

I have plenty of products stocked up for my hair, face, and body, but it can be easy to overlook your oral hygiene and not take enough care of your teeth and gums. All too often in the past I wouldn't think twice about drinking a can of cola everyday or adding a teaspoon of sugar here and there to my tea, not considering the impact it would have.

I'd disregard the "fuzzy teeth" feeling and, despite brushing my teeth and thinking I was taking care of them, my teeth never felt fully clean. Daily caffeine and sugar also left my teeth stained and yellow.

A trip to the hygenist last year was a big wake up call (something I'd highly recommend!) and since then I've tried to do as much as possible to keep my teeth and gums clean & healthy, and have invested in simple products to add to my daily routine.

Picking up easy habits like investing in a good toothpaste and flossing daily have made a significant improvement, while I've also started adding in treatments to white my teeth and reverse the stains...



Switch up your floss

I used flossing sticks for years and thought they were effective, so it was a huge surprise when I last went to the hygienist and she questioned if I flossed my teeth, as she said there was a lot of plaque built up. I soon learnt that interdental brushes are far more effective for flossing teeth (I used to use these when I had braces as a teenager to clean between the wires, and actually had no idea they could be used for flossing too!)

Since then I use interdental brushes daily. TePe produce some of the best ones and Dentek are equally as good but more affordable, and you can buy them with different sized brushes depending on the size of the gaps between your teeth! You simply go along the bottom of your gum and push the brush between the gaps in your teeth, which helps get rid of any food and plaque built up. This is a must at the end of the day and my teeth feel so much cleaner as a result.



Coconut oil to kill bacteria

I've read about the benefits of oil pulling, which claims to whiten teeth, and thought it was a bit of a gimmick or trend, however, when my mouth is feeling a little fuzzy or never fully clean, a quick glug of coconut oil really helps to give it a deep clean and rinse away any nastiness.

I use it as a mouth rinse, popping a couple of teaspoons of oil in my mouth, waiting for it to dissolve, then swishing it around. The natural ingredients in coconut oil help to kill off bacteria and pull away at plaque, reducing build up in your mouth. (I love Lucy Bee or Vita Coco coconut oil)

Most articles I've seen recommend practicing oil pulling for around 15-20 minutes, however, I usually manage about five minutes and find it works just fine! Make sure you spit the remnants out into a tissue and throw it in the bin rather than spit it out down the sink, as the oil can solidify in the drain and clog it up!





Invest in a good toothpaste

A decent toothpaste will make all the difference at thoroughly cleaning your mouth, teeth and gums. Something I've been more conscious of recently is the yellowness and staining on my teeth, which I am trying to treat without the cost and effort of professional treatments (particularly during lockdown!)

I’ve often been skeptical about whitening toothpastes and questioned their benefits or if they really work, however, I recently purchased Colgate Max White Ultimate Catalyst toothpaste*, which contains professional whitening ingredients. At a first glance it’s clear this isn’t your bog standard whitening toothpaste (even the shop assistant commented on how fancy it looked when I picked it up in the shop!) and at £20 it isn't cheap, however, it is thoroughly effective and cheaper than other teeth whitening options on the market.

This is the first ever enzyme-boosted whitening toothpaste with a professional whitening ingredient which removes deep stains safely. On first use I could tell this was a professional product as it smells just like the dentist. It felt gentle and smooth on my teeth, not abrasive at all, and wasn't too strong or overpowering as some toothpastes can be on my sensitive teeth. It left my teeth feeling clean and healthy and I'm noticing a difference after just a few days' use, making me more confident in my smile!





Whitening treatments 

There are tons of whitening treatments on the market, from whitening strips to gels and UV lights. I find these treatments can be quite faffy, however, as I wear a retainer at night I love the ease of adding whitening gel to my retainer and sleeping with them in (way easier than just having one in for 15 minutes or trying to get on with my day with a strip on my teeth). In the past I made the mistake of ordering gels from non-verified online sites and I found the gels were far too strong or covered in bleach, making my teeth extremely sensitive.

I recently ordered a set of 3 gels from Smiletime, which are for more gentle on my teeth. Although these are designed to be used alongside a mouth tray with an LED light, I find they work just as well in my ordinary retainer!


*Product was gifted by Colgate, but all views are my own

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