Yes, you can whiten teeth naturally! (8 methods)
Whiten teeth naturally? Sounds too good to be true. Let’s face it, toothpaste isn’t always enough to remove stains from coffee or aging and bleaching kits are expensive.
Speaking of the cost, American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, Americans spend approximately $1.4 billion on teeth whitening products every year!1/
Of course, the easiest way to keep teeth bright, healthy, and radiant, is to reduce staining whenever possible. In order to do that, you may want to use straws with your beverages, avoid any potentially stain-causing substances like coffee, tea, or cigarettes.
But, when you need extra help achieving a bright smile, try these methods, some used for thousands of years, to whiten teeth naturally and more affordably:
1. Coconut Oil
This oil is loaded with nutrients to help keep your mouth healthy, including lauric acid – a compound that gives coconut oil its whitening power. It is also a potent and powerful antibacterial substance.2 Used for centuries to strengthen teeth and reduce bacteria in-between teeth and along the gum line in what’s known as “oil pulling,” coconut oil is one of the most effective, popular ways to clean and your whiten teeth.3
To use coconut oil for oil pulling, simply allow the oil to heat up in room temperature so it becomes liquefied, and then put 1 tablespoon into your mouth. Swish the oil around and pull it through your teeth for about 5 minutes (try to work up to 20 minutes) to gain the benefits of natural whitening.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide
This natural bleaching agent is added into many conventional teeth whitening products including strips, and gels. As a mouth rinse, the foaming bubbles can be fun as they penetrate between your teeth and along the gum line, killing off bacteria in your mouth. People use hydrogen peroxide to clean topical cuts, abrasions, and scrapes, but researchers have found that it is, in fact, a proven effective way to whiten too.4
One study found that using toothpaste containing baking soda and peroxide led to significantly whiter teeth – up to 65% whiter in just six weeks.5
Doctors say that one of these every day will keep you in good health, and they are right. But apples aren’t just a nutritious snack – they also help to boost your bright smile. You see, apples contain a phytochemical known as malic acid that works along with your saliva to clean away surface stains that linger on tooth enamel.6
Other fruits that contain a high amount of naturally-occurring malic acid include bananas, apricots, blackberries, cherries, lychees, peaches, pears, and nectarines. To use these foods for teeth whitening, you can simply set slices these fruits on your teeth to let the chemical reaction take place (about 5-10 minutes). For bananas, use the peel.
This root spice has a potent taste that many people find warm and appealing. Commonly used to flavor spicy Indian dishes like curry, this spice has also been found to support dental health. Offering powerful anti-inflammatory effects, studies have shown that turmeric may rival mouthwash as an anti-plaque agent to support strong teeth and healthy gums.7
Use the natural antibacterial ability of turmeric on your teeth to brighten your smile. To use it, you may want to purchase turmeric powder already ground from the root, and mix it with water and coconut oil to make a paste. Then, simply apply the paste to your teeth for up to 15 minutes 3-5 times a week for whiter teeth.
5. Oral Probiotics
You may already know that microbacteria inside of your mouth can cling to your teeth and get stuck in tight places along the gum line. From there, things only get worse, because if you don’t effectively clean away these pathogens, they can dull and damage your teeth and gums. Recent research has revealed that adding “good” microbacteria to your dental care regimen, in the form of probiotics, may produce significantly whiter teeth in a matter of weeks.8
Not only that, but studies have shown that probiotic strains of microbacteria also aid in stimulating the production of naturally-occurring hydrogen peroxide in the mouth, which has a whitening effect on teeth.9
Beneficial probiotics can be found in common foods and beverages, including yogurt, tempeh, and miso soup. To use oral probiotics to boost overall dental health and whiten your teeth, try using any of these probiotic drinks as a mouth rinse: miso water, kefir, and probiotic tea (also known as kombucha).
6. Activated Charcoal, (AC)
This powdery substance is also known as activated carbon. Able to attract substances to it, activated charcoal binds to them for easy removal, making AC a safe, and effective way to naturally whiten your teeth.10 As you apply activated charcoal to your teeth, it not only removes bacteria and plaque, but it also stimulates the production of naturally-occurring hydrogen peroxide in your mouth to speed up the whitening process.
This substance can be made into a paste to remove surface stains, plaque, and deep discolorations, revealing the naturally white color of your teeth. To use activated charcoal as a toothpaste, you can add the powder to a coconut oil and water mixture to make a paste, or you may choose to simply buy an activated charcoal toothpaste from a drugstore.
Note: Activated charcoal is a staining substance, and should not be used on dentures or crowns, as it may damage dental work. Also, always use AC in a sink, where rinsing away the dark black powder is easy to do.
7. Kaolin Clay
This mineral clay is a powerful anti-bacterial substance that glides on smooth over your teeth for a whiter smile. Due to its vast absorptive capabilities, kaolin clay works to kill pathogenic bacteria that can damage dental health, and dull the bright white color of your teeth.11
Kaolin clay also contains a large amount of naturally-occurring minerals derived from the earth, including calcium, magnesium, and silica to help strengthen teeth through re-mineralization. To use mineral clays as teeth whiteners, simply use the clay as you would a toothpaste for brushing, and be sure to rinse thoroughly. Other mineral clays used for teeth whitening include: bentonite, Moroccan, and French green clays.
8. Cocoa Powder
If you love the taste of chocolate, you’re going to rejoice about the new research on cocoa powder for healthy teeth! Researchers have found that the active phytochemical found in cocoa, known as theobromine, is able to strengthen teeth and protect surface enamel.12
To use cocoa powder to strengthen and whiten your teeth, you can purchase bakers squares, and add the shavings to warm coconut oil to make a paste for brushing, or just purchase cocoa powder and mix it with water for a highly-concentrated theobromine mouthwash. Whitening teeth has never been so delicious!
Note: Coconut oil makes a great base for a theobromine tooth whitener. Just blend the cocoa powder and coconut oil together at room temperature until it liquefies, and then allow it to set in the refrigerator. Then you can use the mixture as a paste or mouthwash, as it liquefies in your mouth.
Everyone wants a white, bright, and healthy smile. But there are so many things that can cause your teeth to become yellow, or even brown. Things like the natural aging process, enamel erosion, poor diet, coffee, tea, and other stain-causing beverages, smoking, and even dry mouth can contribute to tooth discoloration. While avoiding these risk factors for dingy-looking teeth is the best way to maintain your healthy smile, you can also use these 9 natural ways to whiten your teeth at home. Now, that’s a reason to smile.
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