by Elizabeth Renter,
No one wants a yellow smile, but if you’ve paid attention over the last several years, smiles have gotten whiter and whiter. It’s not completely unusual these days to see a celebrity, newscaster, or other person overly-concerned with their appearance, to have teeth so white it’s completely distracting. While you may want a smile that “lights up the room,” it shouldn’t be so white that you look radioactive. No matter how white you want your teeth, there are plenty of natural teeth whitening home remedies for a beautiful smile.
Teeth discoloration is part of the aging process. But just like wrinkles, many people fight it. While you can expect your teeth to change a little over the years, there are things you can do to avoid stains and embarrassing discoloration—and fortunately, these natural teeth whitening home remedies solutions don’t require hundred dollar bleaching trays, dentist visits, or unknown chemical solutions.
Natural Teeth Whitening Home Remedies for a Beautiful Smile
1. Eat Strawberries
There is evidence that strawberries can help whiten teeth due to containing an enzyme called malic acid and vitamin C. The astringent found in strawberries helps to remove surface stains, while vitamin C washes away plaque. Mashing a few strawberries and brushing with the mixture once or twice a week can have positive results. You could also just eat strawberries, making sure to chew really well and allowing them to do the brushing on their own.
2. Floss Your Teeth
For some reason, flossing doesn’t come as easily to people as brushing. Still, many dentists and hygienists agree that flossing is more important than brushing. Floss twice daily for the best, teeth-saving results. Just flossing can easily remove the staining between your teeth, helping them to look whiter.
3. Baking Soda and Lemon
This may be one of the most popular of the natural teeth whitening home remedies. The chemical reaction of baking soda with the citrus of lemon juice has a smile-brightening effect. Either one of these ingredients works well, but together they are super-effective. Only brush with this solution once per week as it can wear away the tooth enamel if used too frequently. If irritation occurs, the baking soda may be too abrasive for your gums, so discontinue use.
Directed by Dr. Oz:
In a small bowl, mix a little bit of baking soda with the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon. The mixture should bubble slightly. Using a cotton swab, wipe saliva and excess plaque from your teeth before brushing on the mixture. Leave the mixture on your teeth for a minute before gently brushing it off with a toothbrush.
Don’t leave the mixture on your teeth for any longer than a minute; the acid erode tooth enamel.
4. Eat Crunchy Fruits and Veggies
Apples, celery, and carrots are all great for your teeth. Crunchy fruit or vegetables act like nature’s toothbrush. Simply chewing removes excess food and bacteria from your mouth. It also helps to scrub away surface stains. Not only does the texture remove food particles and bacteria, but the acids in the fruits and vegetables pull double duty, actually keeping the teeth whiter. Apples in particular contain malic acid, the chemical also found in strawberries (and teeth whitening products) that removes surface stains.
5. Oil Pulling
Oil pulling is an Indian remedy used primarily to enhance oral health and cleanse the body. The process is actually quite simple, harmless, and very inexpensive. Simply take one tablespoon of a pure, organic oil and swish it around in your mouth for 15-20 minutes. Move the oil around your mouth through sipping, sucking, and essentially pulling through your teeth. After rinsing, spit out the oil, thoroughly rinse your mouth out with water, and consume 2-3 glasses of water (purified if possible).
To learn more on what oil pulling is and the oil pulling benefits, check out our oil pulling post. You won’t want to miss this interesting solution.
6. Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide
Others reported on Earthclinic that hydrogen peroxide could also be an effective teeth whitening remedy. Hydrogen peroxide prevents the growth of bacteria, can help to prevent infections, and prevents bad breath, which often results from bacteria. Simply swish some food-grade hydrogen peroxide (FGHP) around in your mouth for a few seconds, than spit it out. Another option would be to mix a 50/50 solution using FGHP and water, and swish it around for 60 seconds.
7. Use a Straw
Coffee, tea, soda, and wine can all cause serious damage to the enamel of your teeth. Whenever possible, use a straw to reduce direct exposure to teeth. If drinking your coffee or wine out of a straw is more embarrassing than discolored teeth, just make sure to brush after drinking these beverages – except after drinking white wine.
A healthy and bright smile is definitely something to be happy about. Eating healthy foods, not surprisingly, can go a long way in ensuring your teeth stay white for years to come. But having an arsenal of natural teeth whitening home remedies can improve your toothy glow without breaking the bank or exposing you to unknown chemicals and bleaches in the dentist’s office.