People seem to be hypnotised by the lure of having teeth that are whiter than an Oscars ceremony.
Studies show that over half of us are dissatisfied with the colour of our teeth.
The seemingly insatiable desire for whiter teeth is welcome news for makers of tooth whitening products, judging by the huge array of over-the-counter kits on offer.
They will certainly be cheaper than going to the dentist – at least in the short term. But they could end up being expensive in the long term, especially if they result in damage to the surface of the teeth and expensive dental procedures are needed to fix the problem.
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Genetics and diet play a large role in why some people’s teeth differ in colour. A lifetime of smoking and consuming strongly coloured foods and drinks, such as curries, tea and coffee, contributes to the effect.
If you can resist these foods and drinks, and give up smoking, the effects are not just cosmetic but could also improve the health of your teeth and gums.
By Damien Walmsley