We live in a new age of medical technology- many cures to diseases once thought incurable have been discovered, life-saving surgeries once thought fantasy have become the norm, and teeth-whitening has become an obsession. A visit to the local dentist has become just another to-do on the preparation lists for weddings or other big events: dress or suit shopping, a visit to the caterer, and, of course, a teeth-whitening session. It’s true- new technology, such as in-office bleaching or use of high-concentration peroxides and over-the-counter strips and plastic trays, have made teeth-whitening easier than ever. Sometimes, however, it pays to go natural. Teeth-whitening treatments can be expensive and a hassle for those with busy schedules. Why go to all that effort when there are easy and cheap natural ways to whiten your teeth?
1- Brush After Eating or Drinking
It may seem obvious, but sometimes it’s better to deal with the problem before it becomes one. Some of the food you eat every day either actively stains your teeth, or can damage and thin your enamel, making your teeth more susceptible to staining. While it is sometimes impractical to brush your teeth after every meal, it is definitely a great option for those who can. Many toothpastes today have been specially designed to help whiten teeth and keep them white. While brushing your teeth might not be the best option for already stained teeth, it is definitely the best way to be proactive about keeping your teeth white in the first place.
Baking soda is one of the best ingredients to restore your teeth to their original, glistening white color. Baking soda’s chemical makeup helps remove the harmful remnants of food you’ve eaten or accumulated plaque on your teeth. One way to incorporate baking soda into your tooth care routine is to mix baking soda into your toothpaste, brush your teeth with it, and rinse with warm water. As baking soda can also be harmful to enamel, it is only recommended that you use it once or twice a week.
3- Coconut Oil
Many have found that applying coconut oil to their teeth after brushing has helped restore whiteness to stained teeth. A study featured in the Journal of Contemporary Dental Hygiene determined that using coconut oil is a completely safe natural remedy to stained teeth and will not damage your teeth or your gums. To use coconut oil for teeth-whitening, you can either place some on your toothbrush or swish a spoonful around in your mouth for 5-10 minutes. Coconut oil offers more than just teeth-whitening properties: its antimicrobial properties also protect and clean your gums for a complete oral-hygienic experience.
4- Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a powerful antibiotic and gum cleanser, and can also help remove stains from your teeth. Many have found amazing results from the use of this natural teeth-whitening remedy, and it has been known to help with even the most stubborn tooth stains which arise from consumption of nicotine and coffee. The compounds found in apple cider vinegar, such as magnesium, acetic acid, and potassium, help kill germs and dangerous bacteria, and grow probiotic (good) bacteria in your teeth. The vinegar’s natural acidity helps break down plaque and other substances from the teeth. As with most acids, apple cider vinegar can also be dangerous to your teeth if used too often or left on for too long. After use, make sure to brush your teeth thoroughly.
There are many other natural ways to whiten your teeth, and for those who have the time and money for it, dental professionals certainly know what they’re doing. However, it’s highly important to recognize that while fixes for stained teeth are helpful, the ideal situation is one where you don’t need a remedy in the first place. Eating healthier, more nutritional foods and cutting down on coffee intake or smoking habits can go a long way in keep your teeth white, and more importantly- healthy.