There’s not much that is better for someone’s self-confidence than a freshly whitened smile after a trip to the dentist. When you can smile freely, putting your pearly whites on display, it feels good. However, just because your teeth are gleaming right after your appointment, doesn’t mean that they’ll always look that way. It’s important to take care of your teeth after whitening treatment to ensure they look their best for as long as possible. For that reason, we have gathered this list of five of the food and drinks you should avoid after getting your teeth whitened. If you would like to brighten your smile, call Chess & Taub Family Dentistry today to make your appointment.

-Coffee

Statistically speaking, you’re likely a part of the 83 percent of adults in America that enjoy drinking coffee. Sometimes, we just need that extra boost to get through the rest of the workday. With that said, it’s best to steer clear of coffee in the weeks following teeth whitening treatment. Why? Dentists and researchers have found that coffee is one of the most common causes of tooth staining. If you drink it often, it might be the reason you’re getting your teeth whitened in the first place. If the prospect of going without your morning cup of joe is too much for you to take, dentists recommend waiting at least 48 hours before consuming dark foods or liquids.

-Red Wine

Recent studies have shown that a glass of red wine at night has positive benefits for our heart. Beyond that, sometimes it’s just nice to kick back and relax with a glass after a stressful day at work. However, the dark color of your favorite Merlot or Cabernet will wreak havoc on your newly whitened teeth. Red wine is the second most common cause of tooth stains, right behind coffee. Put off popping that cork for as long as you can to preserve the effects of your whitening treatment.

-Dark Chocolate

Another item that does have other health benefits, dark chocolate is a great source of antioxidants, which can help lower blood pressure and reduce your risk of heart disease. With that said, its dark color makes it an enemy to freshly whitened teeth. This isn’t to say you need to completely remove dark chocolate from your diet forever. Avoid it for the first week after your teeth whitening treatment and you should be safe.

-Sauces

If you have picked up a trend from these entries, you’ve likely noticed that all of them are quite dark in color. That’s no mistake — darker colored foods stain teeth quite easily. This extends to the sauces we use in various foods. Whether it’s moo goo gai pan with a healthy serving of soy sauce or it’s a pizza from your favorite local joint that makes their own tomato sauce, it will end up staining your newly whitened teeth before you can go back for seconds. Even dark stews and marinades can cause stains. Your dentist will be able to advise you on some other stain-causing foods to steer clear of in the weeks following treatment.

-Acidic Foods

While staining your teeth is certainly something you should be concerned with following teeth whitening, it’s not the only thing to be worried about. When you get your teeth whitened, bleaching agents are applied to the teeth to rid them of those pesky stains. In the time following treatment, this leaves your enamel weakened and sensitive. Acidic foods like oranges, lemons, limes, sodas, pickles, and similar items will increase the acidity of your saliva, which can damage your teeth and feel very painful. If your enamel is permanently damaged, it will reveal the yellow dentin within your teeth, which is much harder to cover up.

You can tell a lot about a person just by looking at their smile. Someone with bright, white teeth will smile bigger and look more confident. When you’re dealing with stained teeth, it can cause you to hide them from others, refusing to smile in pictures and feeling overly self-conscious. A fresh, white smile is within reach for you! For our friends here in Jenkintown, call Chess & Taub Family Dentistry today to schedule your teeth whitening appointment.