As you grow, your first set of teeth are shiny, white pearls. Typically, before they can receive too much damage, those fall out, and your permanent teeth grow in. Over the years, what you eat and your other habits can discolor the natural whiteness of the enamel, causing yellow and brown stains that make you want to hide your smile instead of show it off.
A professional teeth whitening procedure can fix this problem and get you back your sparkling white smile. You’ll see a noticeable difference after your first session, but the procedure itself causes some physical changes in your teeth that you have to be careful with.
One of the main precautions you’ll want to take ahead of time is to make sure you know what kind of foods you can eat after you get your teeth whitened.
What to Eat After Your Teeth Whitening Treatment
Right after your procedure, you can go about life as usual. You shouldn’t notice much more than a little sensitivity, if anything, and you can eat and drink like usual – with some exceptions.
During your whitening treatment, your teeth are modified to allow the bleaching agent better access to the enamel. The solution of the professional whitening product makes your enamel expand to absorb the bleaching agent. While the enamel is still enlarged, though, other food and drink that you have for the first 48 hours can impact the color of your teeth and stain them instead of letting the whitening gel do its maximum work.
To prevent this from happening, dentists recommend a white foods list. Planning ahead lets you hit the grocery store to make sure you have everything you need to keep you full for the first two days after your treatment.
While you enjoy having your pearly whites back, stick to these foods to eat after a teeth whitening:
- Stick to lighter colored foods. The pigment of a brightly colored food item like eggplant or lettuce will break up as you chew. The color will then absorb into your enlarged enamels and make it difficult for the whitening agent to overpower the vivid hues. Lighter colored foods like mashed potatoes, egg whites, milk, and waffles are recommended. Avoid foods with marinara sauces, salads, and other brightly colored options.
- Be careful of the texture and temperature of the food you eat. Since you may have some sensitivity during the first 48 hours, you should be careful to avoid very hot or cold meals. Stay away from foods like popcorn, apples, and other items that are harder to chew.
- Stay away from certain drinks, as well. Foods like berries, caramel, and chocolate are a definite “no,” but what you drink can harm your newly whitened teeth, too. Avoid coffee, tea, dark wines, and dark beers.
- Kick the tobacco habit for two days. Nicotine products aren’t good for your teeth on a regular day, but they’re especially bad for enamel that has just been whitened. Stay away from cigarettes and any other tobacco products for the first 48 hours.
When you’re wondering what foods to eat after your teeth whitening procedure, remember the general rule of thumb: If it’s a white food, it’s good to go. If it’s got “dark” or “red” in the name, it’s a no.
Remember, it’s only for two days. After that, you can enjoy your dark foods and your white smile!
About the Author
Dr. Todd Canatella wants you to have optimal oral health. That is why apart from preventive care and a host of additional services he provides, he is happy to offer tips and advice on ways to improve your teeth and gums at home. As part of the patient education aspect of his practice, Dr. Canatella can suggest nutritional foods you should incorporate into your daily diet that will not only protect against gum disease but also combat tooth decay. To find out how changes to your diet can make a difference in your smile, visit our website.