A bright, friendly smile can be an integral part of a first date or a job interview, but how do you protect your teeth to make sure that smile stays bright? A wide variety of foods can leave stains behind on your teeth because of their acidity, their sugar content or the presence of certain chemicals. We’ve highlighted a few of the most impactful, and we’ll offer a few tips on how to manage them.

Tea & Coffee
Coffee or tea is a morning ritual for many of us, but they are one of the worst offenders when it comes to staining teeth. Coffee and tea both have tannins, a chemical found in bitter, woodsy or nutty flavors known to leave a stain that’s difficult to get rid of. Black tea and coffee will stain more intensely, however, so to lessen the impact you can add a little bit of milk to your morning cup — it’s a good boost of calcium, protein and vitamin D, too!

Red Wine
Choosing wine may be a fun part of your dinner date, but the tannins and rich color in red wine will leave their mark on your teeth. Ordering white instead of red reduces stains left behind, but if you’re really looking forward to that merlot, alternating it with sips of water is a good way to make sure it’s not lingering in contact with your teeth.

A ton of soups, sauces and condiments are tomato-based, but the high acidity and rich red pigment in tomatoes can have lasting effects on your smile. When you’re getting ready to have a warm bowl of tomato soup this winter, drinking water after every few bites can help reduce lingering contact with your teeth.

Candy & Soda
Soda and candy have the same internal cause for their tooth-staining quality: sugar. When you eat or drink sugary substances, bacteria on your teeth feed on that sugar and release acid that make your teeth vulnerable to stains. Dark sodas can leave their pigment behind, and hard or sticky candy increase the amount of time your teeth are exposed to sugar, so it’s best to avoid them whenever possible.

The best way to keep your teeth white is to visit your dentist and dental hygienist regularly, who can give you personalized advice for your goals. Our friendly, experienced team in Long Beach, CA can help you on your way to brighter smiles, so don’t hesitate to schedule your appointment.

Request an appointment online, or call us to book your next appointment at 562-434-6414.