Bright white teeth are highly prized in our current culture, but many people do not know how to keep their teeth white. A professional teeth whitening treatment is one of the most effective ways to get teeth that are several shades whiter, but how do you keep them looking like that long term? Use the following tips to keep your teeth looking white:

Be a Dedicated Brusher

There are so many foods and drinks that can cause surface staining on your teeth. You don't have to totally abstain from drinking coffee or eating dark colored berries, but when you do consume these types of things, you can help prevent your teeth from becoming discolored by brushing immediately afterwards. If you are unable to brush right away, thoroughly rinse your mouth with water to remove materials that can stain tooth enamel.

Replace Your Toothbrush Often

If the bristles on your toothbrush are bent and worn down, you're teeth are not getting cleaned as well as they should be. Old tooth brushes are not effective at removing staining material and bacteria from your teeth, so if it's been a few months since you replaced your toothbrush, it is time to go to the store to buy a new one.

Keep Your Tongue Clean

Many people spend a good amount of time brushing their teeth, but forget all about their tongue. Your tongue can quickly accumulate bacteria, and if it is not cleaned properly each time you brush, that bacteria can be transferred to your teeth and cause discoloration.Brush your tongue after you brush your teeth, and rinse your toothbrush carefully to ensure that you don't deposit the bacteria from your tongue onto your teeth the ext time you use it.

Make an Apple Cider Mouth Rinse

Who knew that this pantry staple could be used to help maintain white teeth? While it is not as strong as a professional grade teeth whitening treatment, apple cider vinegar is quite effective at removing stains from teeth. Using it over time can help prevent stains from building up on the surface of your teeth, keeping your smile the shade that you want it to be. Don't use straight apple cider vinegar- it is important to dilute it with water before rinsing.

Use Activated Charcoal for a Brighter Smile

If you're feeling adventurous, try brushing your teeth with activated charcoal. It may be scary at first, as it will cause your teeth and mouth to become black in color, activated charcoal is great at removing toxins from the mouth, and stains from the teeth. This is not something that you want to do everyday; think of it more as something to do when you feel like your teeth could use a little brightening.

For more advice with at-home whitening, contact a professional like Fredrick A. Heiselman, DDS.