Teeth whitening is no longer a procedure for movie stars and Hollywood actresses. The ability to get bright, white teeth is available to the average person. Throughout time our ideology has told us that a dazzling smile with white teeth is the mark of a beautiful person. It is everyone’s desire to achieve this type of beauty. Over the past decade the production of over the counter, at-home teeth whitening kits has made this a possibility. Unfortunately, whitening strips, trays, pens and gels are just not as effective as laser bleaching or power whitening that is done by professional dentists. Additionally, all of these whitening procedures have a risk of damaging your teeth.
Natural whitening techniques can be used to reduce discoloration and strains caused by plaque build up on your teeth. By using natural whitening methods you can reduce the risks that the harsh chemicals in over the counter products and dental procedures can cause to your teeth. These techniques are natural, safe, simple, and painless and can be found in almost everyone’s kitchen. All of the ingredients can be easily purchased at the store. At home whitening is inexpensive and a fast way to reduce plaque build up that causes discoloration on your teeth. Some of these procedures may take more than one use to see results but when used appropriately and accurately will show significant results.
1. Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate)- A regular ingredient in baking and a natural deodorizer, baking soda can replace toothpaste to not only clean your teeth but also naturally whiten their appearance. Mix baking soda with water and brush your teeth. Rinse thoroughly. Baking soda can replenish lost mineral content in teeth, which give them their naturally white color.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide- Also used in many of the over the counter tooth whitening kits, hydrogen peroxide is a natural antiseptic. Mix with water to rinse the mouth or put a few drops on your toothbrush before brushing your teeth. It also can be mixed into the baking soda toothpaste for added whitening effect. Always remember to thoroughly rinse your mouth after using hydrogen peroxide; otherwise it can oxidize the enamel of your teeth. Avoid using this procedure more than once a day.
3. Strawberries (Malic Acid)- Strawberries and strawberry seeds act like an astringent on your teeth to remove surface plaque and stains. You can cut a strawberry width way and rub directly on teeth immediately after brushing them. Otherwise you can crush strawberries and mix with baking soda. Spread mixture over teeth and leave for 5 minutes. Thoroughly brush away berry mix and rinse completely. This procedure can be done once a week. Always rinse after using strawberries on teeth because if the acid is left on your teeth it can eat away at the enamel.
4. Lemon juice (Citric Acid)- Lemon juice is a natural lightener, it can whiten teeth and skin with its citric acid. However if left on either for too long it can discolor the skin permanently and eat right through the enamel on teeth. By mixing lemon juice with salt you can eradicate stains and discoloring on teeth. Always rinse the mouth thoroughly to remove any lemon juice residue.
5. Orange Rind or Lemon Peel- By rubbing the inner white part of an orange or lemon peel over the teeth it can polish the enamel and remove stains and discoloring. This will renew the white shine on the outside of teeth. Remember to rinse after to remove any left over citric acid.
6. Eat your vegetables- Carrots, celery, broccoli, cucumbers and vegetables with high levels of vitamin C can all reduce stains and discoloring on teeth. These vegetables are naturally abrasive when you eat and chew on them, so they act like a natural toothbrush and remove plaque and tartar build up that can discolor teeth. Vitamin C also decreases bacteria that lives and spreads in the mouth and around your teeth.
7. Spearmint- Spearmint is a natural plaque fighter and also eliminates bad breath by getting rid of bacteria that causes it. By rinsing with 1-2 drops of spearmint you can whiten your teeth and eliminate bad breath.
Sarah Labdar, “Natural, Easy Ways to Whiten Your Teeth”, Everyday Health