How To Whiten Your Teeth
Learn how to properly and safely make your teeth white using various methods
Having sparkling white teeth is a desirable quality and it can make one more attractive. There are many different ways to effectively whiten one's teeth.
- Household Natural Whitening Solutions
- Teeth Whitening Toothpaste
- Whitening Trays
- Whitening Strips
- Whitening Pens
- Whiten your Teeth at the Dentist's Office
- Causes of Tooth Discoloration
Household Natural Whitening Solutions
Apply the pulp of crushed strawberries (contains malic acid) to the teeth and leave it there for 5 minutes. Brush and floss afterwards.
Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) is an abrasive teeth whitener, which means it scrubs stains off of teeth.
Here are some whitening recipes that use baking soda:
- 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon hydrogen peroxide, and a pea-sized amount of toothpaste.
- 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon lemon/lime juice (citric acid), and a pea-sized amount of toothpaste.
- Baking soda by itself.
Gently brush you teeth (using a toothbrush with soft bristles) with circular motions using any of these solutions. Avoid brushing using vigorous back and forth motions, as this can cause a receding gum line. Only brush your teeth with baking soda 1 or 2 times a week as it is an abrasive whitener and can cause damage to the enamel if you do it too much.
Apples, celery and carrots
Apples, celery and carrots support and help whitening teeth, as they act like natural stain removers by increasing saliva production (the mouth's self-cleaning agent) and scrub the teeth clean. They help maintain a fresh breath by killing bacteria that produce halitosis. The juice of apples, especially green apples, contains malic acid.
Open and empty one capsule of activated charcoal. Wet your toothbrush and dab it into the charcoal and then brush it gently on your teeth. You can either brush for a minute or so, or just let it sit on your teeth. Keep the charcoal on your teeth for 3-5 minutes so it can absorb the stains. Rinse out your mouth and brush your teeth after with regular toothpaste to remove the charcoal. Do this everyday for 3-4 weeks. Nature's Way Activated Charcoal will work great for this.
Banana peels contain high amounts of potassium, magnesium, and manganese that remove stains when applied to the teeth. Simply rub the inside of the banana peel on your teeth, wait 3-5 minutes and then brush your teeth as normal. You need to do this daily for 2-3 weeks before you see results.
There is a compound called d-limonene that is inside the white part of the orange peel that acts as a solvent to remove stains. Rub the white part of an orange peel on your teeth, wait 3-5 minutes and then brush your teeth as normal. You need to do this daily for 2-3 weeks before you see results.
Teeth Whitening Toothpaste
There are several toothpastes that are advertise that they whiten teeth. Buy a whitening toothpaste that has the American Dental Association (ADA) Seal of Approval. ADA-approved whitening toothpastes contain abrasive particles (such as baking soda) to polish teeth along with chemicals that bind to stains and remove them. Studies have proven that these toothpastes are no harder on your enamel than other toothpastes.
Whitening trays are similar to mouth guards that you form fit to your teeth. You place a whitening solution (usually carbamide peroxide gel) in the trays and place in the mouth for a specified time period determined by the strength of the gel.
For carbamide peroxide gel:
- 10% to 16% gel can be worn for 2 to 4 hours twice per day.
- 20% to 22% gel can be worn 30 minutes to 1 hour twice per day.
- 30% to 35% gel should be worn for 15 minutes once per day.
- For hydrogen peroxide gel, use the trays for 30 minutes to 1 hour, twice per day.
Peroxide whitening gel has a shelf life of 1 to 2 years. Light deteriorates peroxide so keep it in a dark place or in a dark container. Avoid wearing a strong carbamide peroxide gel overnight.
Whitening strips are strips of plastic that are coated with chemicals that make your teeth white. This strips are placed on your teeth and fold around them. Use them according to the manufacturers directions. Avoid whitening strips that contain chlorine dioxide. This chemical is the same chemical that is used to sterilize swimming pools, and it can damage the enamel on your teeth. Crest 3D White Whitestrips do not contain chlorine dioxide.
You use whitening pens by brushing the pens tip on the surfaces of your teeth. Once applied the compounds are released and whiten your teeth during the day. Don't eat, rinse, or drink for at least 20 minutes after applying it to allow the serum to work. Make sure your teeth are dry before application to make it easier. Finishing Touch Smile Whitening Pens are one of the more popular whitening pens.
Whiten your Teeth at the Dentist's Office
If you are wary to whiten your teeth yourself, you can get them professionally whitened at a dentist's office. Once your teeth are good and white, you may use some of these other teeth whitening methods every other week to keep your teeth from getting yellow.
Causes of Tooth Discoloration
There are several conditions and foods that can lead to teeth discoloration. Here are a few of them:
- Tetracyclines - an antibiotic commonly used for acne, rosacea, cholera, pneumonia, and Lyme disease.
- Enamel hypoplasia - a defect of the teeth in which the enamel is hard but thin and deficient in amount.
- Fluorosis - discoloration of the teeth caused by excessive exposure to low concentrations of fluoride.
- Age - the teeth become more yellow or opaque and generally have a darker hue, usually after 50.
Foods that Stain Yellow Teeth
Avoid these foods or limit the intake of them to keep your teeth white:
- Black Tea
- Tobacco (tar)
- Wine and cola drinks
- Other foods with strong content of pigments
- Chlorhexidine (chemical bactericidal and bacteriostatic used as antiseptic in mouthwashes and toothpastes for the treatment of gingivitis and halitosis). Chlorhexadine does not stain the teeth, it destroys the bacteria in the plaque, allowing other staining agents to discolor the accumulation if the plaque is not removed.
That's it! Let us know below in the comment section what method you like to use or if you have a special method not listed that you use. Thank you.