Each year, Americans shell out millions of dollars to correct staining on their teeth or to simply make their teeth look whiter.
That amount should come as no surprise since having a nice white smile can make you feel more confident in social situations.
In-office teeth whitening can cost from $650-$1000 per session, so you naturally want to protect your investment. That all starts with eating the right foods (and avoiding others) immediately after your teeth whitening session.
Here’s what you need to know about the foods you can and can’t eat after getting your teeth whitened at the dentist’s office.
Why Do I Need to Be So Careful After Whitening?
The reason you need to be so careful with foods and beverages after getting your teeth whitened is that most whitening chemicals are a bit acidic. A higher acidity causes your teeth to become more porous, thereby letting more of the whitening agent under the surface of your teeth.
With your teeth being more porous temporarily, it’s important to reduce the number of staining foods you eat. Food and beverage can enter the pores in your teeth, causing your teeth whitening job to become patchy.
Getting professional whitening is a considerable investment in improving your smile. Not being careful with what you consume within 48 hours of whitening can ruin the investment you just made.
Foods to Avoid After Teeth Whitening
There is some common sense for foods to avoid after getting your teeth whitened. Think of foods that you try to avoid spilling on a white shirt – beets, chocolate, blueberries, tomatoes, red wine.
Dentists typically recommend that you avoid drinking dark beverages like cola, coffee, tea, and red wine. However, a 2015 study found that subjects who had their teeth whitened and drank these beverages did not notice a minimized effect of the whitening.
That being said, if you’re suspicious, avoid these beverages.
You should also try to avoid highly acidic foods during the first 48 hours after getting your teeth whitened. These would be foods like citrus fruits and juices, vinegar, pineapple, and pickles.
You might also experience more tooth sensitivity after getting your teeth whitened. As a result, cold or frozen foods like ice or ice cream might be uncomfortable to eat.
Foods You Can Eat
The dentists at Smiles of Bellevue usually recommend you follow the “white diet” after whitening your teeth. That’s because it lacks the foods that tend to stain your teeth over time.
We already mentioned that you might not need to completely swear off your caffeine sources for a full 48 hours. That being said, we don’t recommend you go drink several large coffees over the course of two days.
If you want to stick to the white diet, your safe foods include:
- apples or pears
- chicken or turkey
- steamed fish
- skimmed milk
There are other foods you can find that adhere to the white diet.
You Can Do Anything for 48 Hours
We know. It sounds like you can’t eat a lot of your favorite foods after getting your teeth whitened. What we say to that is you can do anything for 48 hours.
Teeth whitening is a worthwhile investment that helps improve your smile and pays off in the self-confidence category. Having the discipline to keep your teeth white can also help you maintain better oral health habits.
For more tips on oral and overall body health, check out the health section of our blog.