12 Natural Teeth Whitening Tips
Over the last few years, teeth whitening products have saturated the market, but most of them rely on chemicals that not only may pose potential health risks by seeping into the tissues in your mouth, but also taste like you’ve been gargling Clorox. But luckily for you, there are some non-chemical things you can do that may be able to help whiten your teeth — naturally and cheaply.
1. Eat Crunchy and Fibrous Fruits and Vegetables
Crunchy and fibrous fruits and vegetables like apples, carrots, pears, celery, lettuce, spinach and broccoli have a natural abrasiveness that scrubs your teeth of stain molecules. They also increase the saliva in your mouth, which helps protect teeth from cavity-causing bacteria.
2. Avoid Staining Foods and Drinks
Certain foods can stain the enamel on your teeth. Avoid soy sauce, cherries, blueberries, raspberries and curry, as can drinks like coffee, tea, dark soda and wine.
3. Avoid Smoking
If you’re a smoker, you should know that tobacco can turn your teeth yellow, which is probably the least harmful of its health drawbacks.
4. Rinse with Water
You don’t necessarily need fancy mouthwashes to make a difference. Just rinse your mouth with water after eating to dislodge any food residue that may stick to your teeth and stain them. Besides, mouthwashes contain alcohol and other chemicals like chloride that can actually discolor teeth.
5. Drink Through a Straw
If you find yourself drinking a beverage that could stain your teeth, do so through a straw to limit the contact the liquid has with your teeth, particularly the more visible front teeth.
6. Brush and Floss Regularly
Sometimes the most obvious advice is the best advice. It should go without saying that you ought to brush your teeth and floss regularly, but it really is necessary to help prevent staining from plaque buildup. Flossing is often overlooked, but a good portion of staining happens between the teeth. Also make sure to visit the dentist for regular professional cleaning.
7. Use an Electric Toothbrush
There’s a reason these have stuck around. Electric toothbrushes are good at getting deep into stains to give you the best home cleaning possible.
8. Eat Bacteria-Fighting Foods
Certain foods, like oranges, cranberry juice and even dark chocolate have antibacterial effects in the mouth, which can help reduce plaque buildup.
9. Limit Fluoride Exposure
Although fluoride is added to water to help strengthen teeth, too much exposure — be it through water or toothpaste — can cause discolored white spots to form on your teeth.
10. Eat Dairy
Cheese, milk and yogurt contain calcium and phosphorus, minerals that help strengthen tooth enamel, reducing the risk of cavities.
11. Chew Sugar-Free Gum
The motion of chewing gum helps clean teeth, but make sure you don’t negate any of the gum’s benefit by ingesting sugar. Try sugar-free gum with xylitol, a natural sweetener found to deter plaque and bacteria growth.
12. Use Fashion to Trick People’s Eyes
If you have trouble actually making your teeth whiter, try making them appear whiter based on your fashion. Shiny silver and diamond accessories can bring out the white in your teeth, but be careful of wearing white shirts that can make your teeth seem yellow by comparison. Experiment with lipstick colors to see how they make your teeth look, and use a tanner to darken your skin and make your teeth pop.
(Sources: Huffington Post, HowStuffWorks, HealthInformationPlace, EzineArticles.com, Woman’s Day)