Beauty/Grooming, Health/Life

How to whiten teeth naturally – and why to avoid baking soda, lemon and peroxide

how to whiten teeth naturally (1)

Outlines how to whiten teeth naturally, but why you should never use baking soda, lemon, hydrogen peroxide or salt – and avoid whitening toothpastes.

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White teeth are a symbol of health and beauty. But few people have naturally white teeth. Both genetics and lifestyle have an impact on the color of teeth.

First of all, we should outline that from a medical point of view, discolored teeth are not a problem. But many people find a yellow or gray color and stains on their teeth simply unaesthetic and want to do something about it. But how do you get white teeth?

More and more people are opting for whitening. In this article, we will introduce you to all the best home methods for whitening teeth and tell you what you need to consider. However, when it comes to how to whiten teeth, particular care must be taken to ensure that the method is both effective and gentle on the tooth and that the use of home remedies does not permanently damage the tooth enamel and even cause dental diseases.

What stains teeth?

Not only can teeth themselves discolour, but also artificial teeth and some fillings. In addition, some people naturally have lighter teeth than others. So if your teeth are more yellowish, that doesn’t automatically mean your dental care isn’t good. Also, age changes the enamel and can cause discoloration.

Even so, there are a few factors that have been shown to cause discoloration.

  1. Nicotine: Smoking causes discoloration of the teeth. It doesn’t really matter if you smoke every day or just every few days. Nicotine is also harmful to dental care in general as it promotes bad breath and tooth decay.
  2. Drinks: Tea, red wine and coffee are foods that unfortunately can also lead to discoloration of the teeth. This is because they contain fine color particles that are deposited on the surface of the teeth and penetrate directly into the tooth enamel. This means that even daily tooth cleaning with toothpaste can no longer counteract it. Also don’t drink carbonated drinks. Anyone who drinks a lot of sweet lemonades or sugary drinks harms their body. But they also contain a lot of acid and can stain and break teeth in the long term and / or with excessive consumption.
  3. Medication: The permanent use of antibiotics or other medication containing tetracycline can also lead to tooth discoloration. This is a particular risk for children under eight years of age, as their teeth are still developing.
  4. Bad oral hygiene: Those who do not brush their teeth at least twice a day (even better after each meal) have an increased risk of plaque and tartar. This plaque can be a cause of discoloration and bad breath
  5. Chlorhexidine mouthwashes: Caution should be exercised with mouthwashes containing ingredients such as chlorhexidine. These help with inflammation of the gums or a sore throat, but ensure you end up with yellowish teeth. Regular use is therefore not recommended.

How to whiten teeth: why you should not use baking soda and baking powder

You will see many instructions for how to whiten teeth with baking soda. They will tell you that, mixed with a little water, you should brush your teeth with it and you get whiter teeth. That may be true, but the tiny particles abrade the teeth so much that the enamel is damage. The result? The teeth are lightened optically, but in the worst case, microcracks can arise in the tooth substance. Color particles can get stuck in these cracks and so the teeth tend to be more discolored in the long term. 

Long-term rough teeth enamel surfaces that only discolor faster because microparticles can be deposited in them more easily. Just like baking powder, baking soda can also attack the tooth enamel and thus promote discoloration. From a dental point of view, the use of baking powder and baking soda to whiten teeth is therefore strongly discouraged.

Why you should avoid lemon to whiten teeth

The supposedly natural lemon juice is also harmful to dental health and should not be used to treat yellow teeth. It is well known that the strongly acidic lemon juice has a bleaching effect. Therefore, it stands to reason that the teeth can also be whitened with lemon juice. However, the highly concentrated acid attacks the tooth substance and can, under certain circumstances, irreparably damage the tooth enamel. Therefore, teeth whitening with lemon juice is strongly discouraged. 

Do not brush your teeth with salt

It is also a myth that brushing your teeth with table salt whitens your teeth. Although salt has disinfecting properties and can therefore effectively fight bacteria, the salt crystals (similar to baking powder or baking soda) grind off the tooth enamel. The use of salt as a bleach is therefore also not recommended. 

Avoid hydrogen peroxide to whiten teeth

You will also see many people give advice on how to whiten teeth with hydrogen peroxide. Anyone who has already lightened their hair knows that hydrogen peroxide is an effective means of bleaching. It is therefore often contained in low concentrations in bleaching gels and whitening toothpastes. 

However, it is strongly advised not to use highly concentrated hydrogen peroxide in the oral cavity. The acid can potentially damage the enamel, gums and throat. Avoid using pure water peroxide and use professional whitening products. 

Why you should avoid whitening toothpastes

Many different tooth whitening toothpastes can be found on drug store shelves. The principle sounds simple and good: Simply brush your teeth regularly and you will get whiter teeth. But usually no effect can be seen in any case. And you’d better avoid these pastes… Because just like baking soda, they contain abrasive particles that are not good for your teeth in the long run. They damage the tooth enamel and promote discoloration – one more reason to whiten teeth naturally.

How to whiten teeth naturally – and safely

There are many different tools that promise whiter teeth. However, most of these are harmful to our health. But you can resort to gentle methods with which teeth can be whitened – naturally and without damage. When it comes to white teeth, these are the best home remedies and tips:

How to whiten teeth naturally with yoghurt 

The yoghurt cultures contained in natural yoghurt improve the pH value in our mouth and ensure a healthy oral climate. In addition, the many minerals keep the enamel beautifully healthy andhelp give the teeth their natural white back.

How to whiten teeth naturally with cheese

Brighter teeth – but of course! Our favorite milk product not only tastes good, it also contains important minerals such as calcium and phosphorus. Among other things, these serve to remineralize the tooth enamel – and thus also to whiten our teeth.

How to whiten teeth naturally with Vitamin C

The vitamin C content contained in oranges and strawberries, for example, has a self-cleaning effect. Among other things, this prevents inflammation of the gums and promotes the flow of saliva. In this way the teeth are thoroughly rinsed.

How to whiten teeth naturally with oilpulling

Quite simply: With oilpulling, you rinse your teeth for a few minutes with coconut oil. The coconut oil leaves a protective film in the mouth that repels germs and bacteria. These are often responsible for all kinds of discoloration. If you incorporate oilpulling into your daily dental care routine, you can whiten your teeth in a natural way.

How to whiten teeth naturally with turmeric

It sounds counterintuitive (because turmeric is used in cooking to give a yellow color as well as its flavor) but it also works to remove stains from enamel. Mix some turmeric powder with coconut oil until it turns into a golden yellow paste (tip: do not heat coconut oil beforehand, otherwise it will melt ). Then put the paste on a disposable brush and brush the teeth – admittedly, it looks pretty scary, we think. Leave the turmeric and coconut oil mixture on for five minutes before brushing with your regular toothpaste. And the rather surprising result? White teeth !

Although you would think that the spice would stain your teeth, turmeric is a natural and, above all, mild abrasive that removes deposits and simply soaks up stains. Positive side effect: this not only makes teeth whiter, turmeric also contributes to general oral health , supports the gums and relieves toothache. 

Fruit and vegetables that help whiten teeth

There are safe and questionable methods of teeth whitening. All methods that attack tooth enamel should be avoided at all costs. © galkinkirill – stock.adobe.com

Certain fruits and vegetables are not only healthy, they also have certain ingredients that support teeth whitening and can make teeth appear brighter. Particularly noteworthy are fresh strawberries mentioned above, the skin of which contains substances that lighten the teeth when consumed regularly. This also applies to apples, whose natural fruit acids can help remove tooth discoloration when eaten. Carrots or kohlrabi also clean the teeth by reducing or preventing superficial discoloration.