Professional teeth whitening is one of the best ways to clean your teeth, remove tartar buildup and stains and get a whiter smile overall. Depending on which type of tooth whitening you opt for, your results could last anywhere from several weeks to several months. But, if you want to get the best out of this procedure and ensure your teeth stay bright and white for as long as possible, here are four ways to make the effects last longer.

1. Brush after every meal

Generally, it's not strictly necessary to brush your teeth more than twice a day to keep your dental hygiene, but brushing more often may keep up your whiteness. Not only will brushing your teeth after every meal help keep bacteria and tartar from building up, but it will also dislodge any food particles that could settle and stain your white smile. It also helps remove any staining that has happened throughout the day before it takes hold. Just remember that if you've eaten anything sugary or acidic, it's best to wait one hour after your meal before brushing to reduce the risk of damaging your enamel; in the meantime, you can rinse with a glass of water.

2. Avoid drinks that stain

Do you regularly drink coffee, tea, wine or any other beverages that are known to stain teeth? Unless you have time to brush after every drink, it's a good idea to reduce your intake of such beverages if you want to keep your teeth whiter for longer. Over time, the tannins and natural dyes in these drinks discolour your teeth, and that's the last thing you want to happen right after your professional whitening.

3. Stop smoking 

You likely already know that smoking can be very damaging to your overall health, but did you know it affects the whiteness of your teeth too? Smoking not only causes yellowing of teeth but also dark spots and stains. When a person smokes, the nicotine and tar in their cigarettes act as a dye; the more you smoke, the faster the discolouration process happens. Smoking also decreases saliva production, and saliva is essential for washing away contaminants before they stain. To maintain your pearly whites and to keep them healthy, smoking should be on your "avoid" list post-whitening treatment. Even if you can't quit completely, cutting down on cigarettes can be a big help.

4. Visit your dentist regularly 

Another way to keep your teeth bright and pearly white is by visiting the dentist regularly. Regular visits to your dentist will help you maintain mouth hygiene and catch problems like dental decay and gum disease before they take hold, but your dentist can also evaluate your tooth whiteness too. Even aside from food, drink and smoking, there are many factors that can affect teeth colouration. As such, visiting a professional who can get to know your circumstances is a great way to find out any personalized dos and don'ts to support your teeth whitening treatment.