Sometimes no matter how many times you brush your teeth, you just can’t get them to look much whiter.
Our teeth are easily stained by from everyday habits such drinking coffee or tea, smoking, or eating brightly coloured foods, giving them an off-white or pale yellow look (teeth that are more yellow or brown than off-white are usually indicative of poor dental hygiene and conditions like gingivitis).
Meanwhile, as we age our enamel thins, and this can contribute to a less than gleaming white appearance to the teeth.
But there are some natural ways you can help your smile revert to pearly, without harming your teeth.
This is a simple yet effective way to keep your teeth looking healthy and white. Just like a stain on a white t-shirt, the longer you leave it, the harder the stain is to get out, so brushing soon after eating or drinking something staining will lessen the likelihood of unsightly discolouration.
Hydrogen peroxide works as a great mouthwash when paired with water and is also a great antibacterial agent.
Apart from whitening your teeth, hydrogen peroxide can provide protection against gum diseases like gingivitis and periodontitis. You can also mix a small amount of hydrogen peroxide with a small amount of baking soda or bicarb to make a paste to get rid of plaque from the surface of the gums.
There is so much hype around coconut oil already, but coconut oil really can also be used on your teeth!
Coconut helps whiten them and can also temporarily create a faux enamel for them.
Simply swish a spoonful of coconut oil between your teeth and around your mouth for five to 20 minutes (yes, some people really can keep it up that long – it’s a process called ‘pulling’!) or add a few drops to your toothbrush and brush your teeth. Coconut oil serves as a great preventative measure for tool decay too.
Like hydrogen peroxide, apple cider vinegar acts as a natural antibiotic and gum cleanser.
Apple cider vinegar is also great for removing stains from the gums. It works because of acetic acid, potassium, magnesium, probiotics, and enzymes, it contains, all of which help fight bacteria.
The key to using this method of teeth whitening is being consistent because it usually takes one month to see noticeable results. As with most acids, though, you will need to be careful not to brush too hard or use too much of the product because the acidity can remove enamel.
Lemon and orange peels contain beneficial acids which are great for teeth whitening.
Simply rub them against your teeth, then use your toothbrush to brush to ensure the effect is evenly spread. Rinse your mouth out afterward with water or use a hydrogen peroxide mouthwash for the best results.
Again, do not use this method too aggressively because the acidity can wear down enamel.
Mash some strawberries up and rub the mixture over your teeth to start the whitening process, and then rinse.
Strawberries contain antioxidants and compounds that are beneficial for teeth health.
Activated charcoal works at whitening your teeth by absorbing toxins, plaque, and the microscopic tidbits that cause tooth staining.
To use this method, dip a wet brush into a container of powdered activated charcoal, which is available from pharmacies and health-food stores. Brush your teeth thoroughly and rinse your mouth, and you should see immediate teeth whitening results.
Use this method three times a week for a set of pearly whites.