When baking soda toothpastes first became widely available, many people jumped on the bandwagon to try one of the products supposed to help with oral health. The craze has now died down, and the supply has been reduced in some markets. I have to drive 40 miles to find a tube where I live. If people really knew all the health benefits of baking soda, however, those toothpastes would probably be even more popular today.
Baking soda is an easy, inexpensive way to whiten teeth. Baking soda is an excellent cleaner, one that has been known and used for centuries. The Ancient Egyptians, for instance, used a form as a cleanser for themselves and their household products. Adding a bit of peroxide to your brush makes an even better oral cleaner.
A clean mouth goes along with sweet-smelling breath. But besides cleaning teeth, baking soda also neutralizes acids in the mouth that contribute to bad breath. Some of those acids are Volatile Sulfur Compounds, the materials that are used to measure bad breath in oral research studies.
Rather than brushing (or in addition to), you can create a mouthwash to use. A small amount of baking soda in lukewarm water can eliminate many odors and leave your mouth feeling clean. A teaspoon in about a half glass should give you a good balance.
One of the most common causes of oral pain is canker sores. Gargling with the soda water mix helps with the pain. A thick paste from soda and a small amount of water can be smeared on the canker sore with a q-tip. Let it dissolve naturally, and the mix will continue to work longer. Baking soda reduces the acid in the mouth, reducing the pain from the sore.
Help heal oral problems
A soda water rinse will not only help with the pain of a canker sore, but it will actually help with healing. The antacid properties leave the mouth in a state less likely for the canker sore to thrive. In addition, baking soda is an antibacterial. A rinse several times a day will reduce the bacteria, helping the sore heal.
But it doesn’t just help with canker sores. Other, more serious oral hygiene issues can be cleared up with baking soda. A dental abscess is a pocket of fluid. It gets infected, starts to swell, and causes severe pain. The rinse reduces the inflammation and cleanses the mouth of the bacteria. Although a trip to the dentist is still warranted, baking soda can ease the problem temporarily, at least. Rinsing with a stronger solution several times daily will help with the pain.
A portable, inexpensive oral health kit
Obviously, baking soda can be a helpful part of your oral care regimen. It can help prevent oral health issues or lessen pain after a problem has arisen. The even better news is that you don’t have to use pre-made baking soda toothpastes or rinses. You can make your own paste or just add some baking soda to the top of the paste already on your toothbrush. Keeping a box in your bathroom is an easy way to get cleaner, healthier teeth and gums.
“Baking Soda.” Reader’s Digest. Rd.com.
“Canker Sores.” Health911.com.