• By Laurel J. Kelly

Consumer Health: Does whitening toothpaste work?

March 9, 2018

a happy young woman with a big, beautiful smile and especially white, healthy-looking teethDoes whitening toothpaste actually whiten teeth? 
Whitening toothpaste can appear to whiten teeth slightly by removing surface stains, such as those caused by drinking coffee or smoking. However, whitening toothpaste can't change the natural color of your teeth or lighten a stain that goes deeper than a tooth's surface. For that, you'll need over-the-counter or professional bleaching products. Learn more from Dr. Thomas Salinas, a Mayo Clinic prosthodontist.

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Also in today's tips ...

Yoga: Fight stress and find serenity 
Yoga is more than a trendy exercise. It's a mind-body practice that combines physical poses, controlled breathing, and meditation or relaxation. Yoga may help reduce stress, lower blood pressure and lower your heart rate. There are many styles, forms and intensities of yoga, and almost anyone can do it. Here's how to get started.

Vitamin D toxicity: What if you get too much?
Vitamin D toxicity, also called hypervitaminosis D, is a rare but potentially serious condition that occurs when you have excessive amounts of vitamin D in your body. This condition usually is caused by megadoses of vitamin D supplements — not by diet or sun exposure. That's because your body regulates the amount of vitamin D produced by sun exposure, and even fortified foods don't contain large amounts of vitamin D. Learn more from Katherine Zeratsky, a Mayo Clinic registered dietitian.

Sample menus for the DASH diet 
Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) is an eating plan to lower or control high blood pressure. The DASH diet emphasizes foods that are lower in sodium, as well as foods that are rich in potassium, magnesium and calcium — nutrients that help lower blood pressure. To help you get started, here are three days of menus that conform to the DASH eating plan.

Alzheimer's: When to stop driving
Driving is a routine part of adult life for many people. It's also a symbol of independence. At some point, a person living with Alzheimer's disease no longer will be able to drive. Talk about this eventuality with your loved one early, and plan his or her retirement from driving. Here are some tips for beginning that conversation and easing the transition.

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