With shows like TLC's "Say Yes to the Dress" and E! Network's "Bridalplasty," pop culture has reshaped the nuances around nuptials. How you look on your wedding day is almost as important as saying the words "I do." At any rate, after putting all that time into planning every single detail, you'll want to work that aisle like a red carpet runway - starting with your smile. Here's how to get your teeth wedding-gown white for the big day:
Practice proper daily oral care
Brushing twice and flossing once daily not only prevents infections and fights bad breath, but it can also contribute to overall whiter teeth. According to Oral-B, pyrophosphates, a component of many toothpastes, works to prevent stains by targeting tartar buildup - a cause of tooth discoloration. Flossing can also prevent plaque growth and the resulting, stain-inducing tartar by removing food particles from between the teeth. Though these should be lifelong habits, if you've been lax in your daily dental cleanings, make sure to step up your oral care game well before the big day.
Avoid foods that will stain your teeth
It's best to stay away from foods that can discolor your teeth or worsen stains in the months leading up to your wedding. According to Colgate, common stain-causing edibles include coffee, red wine, berries, tea and carbonated beverages. These foods and drinks are either highly pigmented or acidic, both common causes of extrinsic stains. If you simply can't do without these items in your diet, drink through a straw, which will minimize the amount of liquid that touches your teeth, and rinse your mouth with water after eating.
Use whitening products
Whitening products, like strips, toothpastes and gels, either remove surface stains or bleach the teeth. Though these tools may contribute to a more brilliant smile, the American Dental Association advised using at-home bleaching products only after you've talked to your dentist. A professional can determine whether these treatments are appropriate for your dental health.
Get a teeth-whitening treatment
Though they're more expensive than at-home care, professional whitening treatments are also available. Colgate noted that the most popular version is vital whitening, which uses a powerful hydrogen peroxide gel that often requires a laser light to activate. You may need up to three separate appointments to complete the treatment, so make sure you plan ahead of time to ensure you're finished before your wedding day. Additionally, your dentist may not be able to whiten your teeth until other oral care concerns, such as cavities, are addressed.
Discover cost savings
According to a 2013 report, women are getting married at age 27 on average, while men are tying the knot at age 29. While this age means couples are likely more established in their jobs and have some money saved up, weddings are still expensive, and it's important to pinch pennies where you can. Fortunately, you can have your cake and eat it too when it comes to getting your smile brilliantly white for your wedding day with the help of a dental discount card. With a low monthly payment, you and everyone in your household can receive discounts on professional oral care procedures. For instance, save $196 on a whitening treatment and use that money to pay for your marriage license and a manicure!