If you want whiter teeth, but also want to avoid the chemicals, then we’ll show you many teeth whitening options that are both natural and safe.
Unfortunately, most mainstream teeth whitening products contain peroxides and other harsh chemicals that can actually damage teeth and gums.
There are multiple factors that cause teeth to become dull and lose their bright, white sparkle.
Here are seven natural remedies for whiter teeth that you may already have in your kitchen.
WHAT CAUSES TEETH DISCOLOURATION
There are distinct factors that lead to discolouration.
Ruling them out early can keep your teeth healthier and whiter for longer.
The outer layer of teeth consists of enamel, which is coloured almost white and protects the deeper tooth structure.
However, when this outer layer thins, it reveals the natural yellow colour of the core tissue of your teeth, making your teeth appear discoloured.
Teeth become discoloured due to stains that develop on the enamel as well as inside the tooth itself.
Underneath the enamel is a pale brown substance called dentin, which can become more visible when the enamel gets thinner.
Unlike dentin, that becomes discoloured from age and trauma, the enamel is often stained from the foods and drinks we consume.
Many dark-coloured foods and drinks contain chemicals called chromogens, like the tannic acid in red wine, these chemicals can stain tooth enamel.
This can cause discolouration and tooth stains.
Not having adequate nutrition can also be a cause of premature tooth ageing, as all parts of the body.
This includes the teeth.
A lack of vitamins and nutrients can make your teeth age quicker, making it appear more yellow.
Foods you should eat include dairy products because of the calcium, nuts thanks to the vitamins and minerals, water as it’s the main component of saliva and fruit and vegetables as they’re high in fibre.
Eating nuts, raw carrots, apples, and cauliflower can also help keep your teeth clean by removing surface stains and plaque that leads to cavities.
Cut down on your sugar intake to promote strong, healthy teeth and avoid dental damage.
Sugars feed the bacteria which naturally live around your teeth and will cause them to multiply rapidly, produce more, which eventually leads to staining.
So, try and switch to unsweetened alternatives to sugary beverages.
Ageing can cause discolouration even if your dental hygiene routine has been perfect.
As you age, the outer layer of the tooth’s enamel gets thinner over time, revealing the natural yellow colour of the core tissue of your teeth.
This natural process can lead to yellowish-brown spots or large patches or discolouration.
Also, the damage, injuries or staining to your teeth, which occur over time throughout your life, cause discolouration that can become noticeable with age.
This is probably the worst cause of tooth decay and discolouration.
Smoking frequently can stain your teeth beyond repair after a long period.
The tar and tobacco found in nicotine rapidly yellow smokers’ teeth.
In addition to this, tobacco can interfere with saliva production which helps the surface of your teeth keep clean.
Smoking stains your teeth and makes permanent grey stains that are impossible to remove.
Eliminating tobacco from your lifestyle can help keep your teeth healthy and bright.
Tooth colour varies from person to person and may be genetic.
Some people naturally have very white teeth and others slightly yellow or beige teeth.
There are also certain genetic disorders that cause brown spots on teeth.
HOW TO PREVENT YOUR TEETH FROM BECOMING STAINED
It’s important to know how to prevent tooth discolouration after teeth whitening, so your teeth stay looking pearly white for a long time.
Limit Staining Foods and Beverages
Certain foods can stain your enamel, which is the outermost layer of your teeth.
Foods and beverages that contain tannins, such as wine and tea, can stain the teeth.
Over time these beverages stain the teeth on the surface and these stains can enter cracks and crevices present on the enamel of the tooth.
If possible, drink beverages which are known to stain teeth out of a straw to prevent direct and prolonged contact with your teeth.
Also, brush your teeth soon after consuming foods or drinks to limit the amount they stain your teeth.
But, make sure you wait thirty minutes after eating before brushing to protect the enamel.
Immediate brushing can just spread the abrasive liquid and further damage your teeth.
Chew Sugarless Gum
Chewing gum is also very beneficial when it comes to maintaining a white smile.
Chewing sugarless gum can help neutralize the acids in the mouth.
This increases saliva flow, which helps rinse your teeth and increases your saliva’s ability to neutralise acid and remineralize your enamel, ultimately strengthening teeth.
WHY ARE NATURAL REMEDIES BETTER FOR WHITENING TEETH?
Some mainstream teeth-whitening rely on chemicals including bleach and acidic methods to strip your teeth, which can sometimes cause long-term damage to your tooth enamel.
Constant application of whitening strips has been shown to cause erosion of enamel over time and also promote tooth sensitivity.
However, natural home remedies can be much gentler to your teeth but can scrub away any stains or discolouration on your teeth.
So, keep reading as we reveal our top home remedies to naturally whiten your teeth.
HOME REMEDIES TO NATURALLY WHITEN YOUR TEETH
Brush Your Teeth with Baking Soda
Baking soda has natural whitening properties, which is why it’s a popular ingredient in commercial toothpaste.
It’s a mild abrasive that can help scrub away surface stains on teeth.
To use it to whiten your teeth, create a thin paste by mixing a teaspoon of baking soda with a bit of toothpaste and water in a small dish.
Then, use a soft toothbrush to apply to teeth and gently brush your teeth in circular motions for two minutes.
The crystals will buff away stains while also neutralising and counteracting any bacterial acid in your mouth.
But, be aware that, over time, baking soda can wear down the protective enamel on your teeth.
So, it is not a good idea to use this treatment every day.
Stick to using it once or twice a week for whitening results without the risk of damage.
Coconut Oil Pulling
Oil pulling is an ancient Indian technique that removes plaque and bacteria exposing whiter, brighter teeth.
It simply uses natural oil to clean and protect your teeth and gums.
Coconut oil contains fatty acids that are broken down into teeth whitening enzymes when they come in contact with human saliva.
The oil also has antimicrobial properties, so it’s great for protecting and cleaning your gums as well.
Unlike ingredients that could pose a risk to your enamel, coconut oil isn’t at all abrasive.
This means it is safe to do daily.
To use this tooth whitening technique, place a teaspoon of coconut oil in your mouth. Wait for it to become liquefied and swish it for fifteen to twenty minutes until you cover all your teeth.
Then, spit out the oil and rinse your mouth with warm water before brushing and flossing.
Alternatively, you can mix coconut oil with your usual toothpaste and brush your teeth like normal.
But, if you can’t use coconut oil, sunflower oil or sesame oil will work just as well.
Make a Strawberry Paste
Strawberries contain malic acid in addition to vitamin C.
This can act as a natural astringent for your teeth to remove stains and plaque.
It is most effective when the fruit is “just ripe” as malic acid declines as fruits ripen.
To get the full effect from strawberries, it’s recommended that you mash up the strawberries and brush your teeth with the paste.
But, make sure that you thoroughly rinse off the berries since they contain a natural sugar.
Use Apple Cider Vinegar
Since it’s naturally acidic, apple cider vinegar helps to break down plaque or other substances stuck to the teeth.
The pH of apple cider vinegar can remove stains from your teeth, which helps naturally whiten your teeth.
To use it as a mouthwash, dilute it with water and swish it around in your mouth for several minutes.
Then, make sure to rinse your mouth with plain water afterwards.
Rinse your mouth with this solution every morning before brushing your teeth to help to remove stains, freshen breath and kill bacteria around your gums.
Banana Peel Rub
You can use the inside of a banana peel, which is rich in potassium, magnesium, manganese, and other minerals, to whiten teeth.
These rich minerals in a banana are absorbed into your enamel and have healthy whitening effects.
Gently rub a small piece of the inside of the banana peel of your teeth for two minutes.
Then rinse with water before brushing your teeth with to remove the banana residue.
Also, since they do not have the abrasiveness that other natural whiteners have, meaning you can use it more frequently without worrying about it wearing out your enamel.
Use Turmeric Powder
You may not expect turmeric to work since it is often associated with yellowing of the skin, but it actually does the opposite.
Turmeric is often used as a natural teeth whitener because it is anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and contains antioxidants.
It also works as a gentle abrasive that can removing surface stains to reveal whiter teeth.
Create a thin paste by mixing a teaspoon of turmeric powderand a bit of water in a small dish.
Then use a soft toothbrush to apply the paste to teeth and gently brush for two minutes.
Don’t forget to brush your teeth with regular toothpaste afterwards.
Activated Charcoal Mask
Though it may seem counterintuitive to blacken your teeth with charcoal to whiten them, this trick actually works.
Activated charcoal is highly absorbent and is able to effectively bond with surface stains, and then lift them away.
Activated charcoal is different from regular charcoal because it has been processed with heat and oxygen or chemicals to increase its capacity to absorb impurities.
Make sure you use medical grade activated charcoal, or charcoal that has been specifically designed to whiten teeth.
Make the paste by mixing together a half a tablespoon of activated charcoal with a little water to make it into a paste-like consistency.
Then apply the mask to your teeth, let it sit for three minutes, and then rinse it away.
HOW TO USE THESE REMEDIES SAFELY
Don’t Overdo It
Naturally whitening teeth at home is safe and effective if done correctly.
Use these natural tooth whitening remedies occasionally to avoid damage to the tooth enamel.
HOW TO MAINTAIN GOOD ORAL HYGIENE TO KEEP YOUR TEETH HEALTHY
Maintaining excellent oral hygiene is the most important thing that a person can do to reduce tooth yellowing.
Brush Your Teeth Twice a Day
Good oral hygiene is a tried-and-true method for keeping your smile looking its best.
Regular brushing can protect the enamel, prevents gum decay, and removes stains.
So, try and brush your teeth once in the morning and also before bed for two minutes with a soft bristled brush to keep it clean and as healthy as possible.
Ensure your brush has soft/medium bristles that don’t damage the gum.
Also, try and choose a toothpaste with fluoride as this will help prevent tooth decay by strengthening your tooth enamel and fighting away bacteria that cause cavities.
Or choose a whitening toothpaste which helps to remove surface stains that cause yellowing and help you to achieve a brighter tooth surface.
Floss Your Teeth
Flossing is one the most important steps in your dental care routine besides brushing.
This is because it helps you get places you can’t reach with a toothbrush clean, leading to healthier teeth and gums.
Plaque and food particles between your teeth can make your smile look dim overall.
Flossing can easily remove the staining between your teeth, helping them to look whiter.
By removing plaque between the teeth, flossing helps eliminate places for potential staining.
Flossing regularly will not only improve the health of your gums, but you will also notice your smile looking brighter.
Use Mouthwash After Brushing
Mouthwash gets into the gaps cleaned out by brushing and flossing.
But, avoid using mouthwashes chlorexidine based, unless advised by your dentist.
They can actually cause a lot of stains on your teeth if used for prolonged periods of time.
Replace Your Toothbrush Frequently
Over time, the bristles of your toothbrush begin to wear out and become soft.
Once the bristles look tired, that means your brush isn’t cleaning your teeth properly.
When this happens, a brush no longer removes plaque and debris from teeth effectively enough to maintain optimum dental hygiene.
If you want a whiter smile, you should replace your trusty toothbrush at least once every three months to be sure it’s getting the job done.
Clean Your Tongue
Brushing your tongue isn’t only about having fresh breath.
Bacteria can accumulate on your tongue which can lead to your teeth being stained.
Brushing your tongue with a toothbrush does not remove the bacteria, but rather just moves it around the mouth.
Using a tongue cleaner is the most effective way to kill the bacteria that causes plaque and gum disease.
Visit Your Dentist Regularly
While you can do much to keep your teeth healthy and clean, it is wise to consult an expert from time to time.
Regular cleanings from a dentist will help you keep your oral health in check and alert you to potential issues sooner.
So, going to the dentist regularly can make a difference beyond just the health of your teeth and mouth.
Your dentist should also be able to recommend safe, effective products that will not irritate your mouth.
So, try and visit your dentist every six months.
Drink Plenty of Water
Water is not only essential for overall wellbeing, but it is also vital for great oral health.
Drinking water throughout the day promotes saliva production, which in turn helps keep your teeth healthy and white.
Sipping water during and after a meal also helps rinse your mouth of any debris and loose plaque.
This keeps any residue from building up.
It’s important when consuming any pigmented food or drink to consume plenty of water.
Drinking water neutralizes the pH of the oral cavity and helps to clear the food or drink out of the mouth.
To learn more about how to prevent tooth discolouration and staining, click here to read our article on Teeth Discolouration: Fix and Prevent Coffee Stained Teeth.