There is nothing more attractive than a nice smile. A smile can take you places, form connections and forge lasting bonds.
Healthy white teeth are the building blocks to that nice smile. If you haven’t been prudent in caring for your teeth, at – home damage control can prove effective.
Bleaching kits however, should be used with caution as advised by dentist Dr Jablow who also coined the term “bleachorexic”.
According to her, bleaching could be counterproductive by weakening enamel and making them yellower, thus defeating the purpose.
It would be then worthwhile to whiten our teeth in the comforts of the available resources of our own kitchens.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Knowing a thing or two about caring for your pearly whites can avert wear and tear and preserve their glory and grace.
A water rinse is good after consuming foods and fruits that are acidic, which can erode the enamel. A pinch of salt to the rinse has the added benefit creating an alkaline environment, making it harder for bacteria to survive.
Teas, coffees, colas and the like, that contain tannins can stain teeth and must be consumed in moderation and followed by a rinse.
Extremely hot or cold beverages can cause discomfort and erode enamel. Smoking tobacco should be avoided as it causes discoloration.
Damage control: Factors beyond control such as age, high levels of fluoride in water, medication, etc. can lead to stains and yellow teeth.
Other than cosmetic dentistry, we can be innovative and proactive in our home remedies to whiten teeth as the 5 listed below:
1. Activated Charcoal
Activated Charcoal is carbon processed into an active form that turns it porous. When ingested it acts as an absorbent drawing to it’s pores, toxins and other bodily wastes.
When brushed on to teeth it acts on stains, as it is attracted to tannins but interestingly doesn’t have adverse effects of eroding enamel.
As a bonus, it balances the pH level of the mouth.
The powdered form can be attained by crushing the tablets or splitting a capsule. Mix it with toothpaste and brush on but be forewarned, it could get a little messy.
Be sure to get a good brand of activated charcoal as non – activated charcoal can be potentially unsafe.
2. Oil pulling
Is safe, natural and counts numerous followers due to it’s proven benefits.
Listed as a daily morning Ayurvedic ritual it provides a host of detox – benefits starting at the mouth, down to the body. Oil pulling can be practiced with coconut, sesame, sunflower or olive oil.The best among the three, for this purpose is coconut oil.
Coconut oil has medicinal properties with the presence of Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCT’s) and Lauric acid, keeping bacteria and viruses at bay.
Many people claim that through regular oil pulling they’ve experienced better dental health, fresher breath and whiter teeth!
The method suggests, swishing a tablespoon of coconut oil for about 20 minutes, on waking. I managed 5 minutes and found the same effects of a cloudy mix of the oil on spitting it out.
The cloudy mix indicates the oil pulled the toxins from the mouth. Swishing for as long as you can, to gradually increase the time might help. It is then followed by regular brushing with toothpaste.
3. Baking Soda
Baking Soda is sodium bicarbonate, an inexpensive alkaline solution to many beauty woes and health worries.
Scientific and anecdotal evidence point it out as an antacid, anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal aid. It has a mild exfoliating effect on the teeth, polishing out plaque and other bacteria.
Brushing with toothpaste sprinkled with baking soda can make teeth squeaky clean and sparkly white.
Baking soda mixes can include cinnamon – a welcome addition to dental health known to be a mouth freshener.
Dabbing a paste of cinnamon and baking soda onto a wet or oil coated toothbrush can work wonders in crafting sparkly whites.
The spice is well regarded for being an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant miracle.Curcumin present in turmeric is responsible for it’s many helpful and healing properties.
Curcumin has proven it’s pivotal presence in dental health, as an analgesic for tooth pain and a relief from gingivitis and periodontitis.
Turmeric extends its miraculous powers to be a sure shot brightener. Include brushing a blend of turmeric and water to your morning norm, before brushing with toothpaste.
5. Lemon essential oil
Essential oils are excellent in their extensive list of efficacies. Lemon essential oil has bleaching properties that it offers to teeth – whitening.
Lemon is known to be acidic but the oil is safer being pH neutral. A drop of the oil can be combined to a tablespoon of water or carrier oil like coconut oil, into a brilliant blend to brighten teeth.
Brush with the same prior to brushing with toothpaste. It is recommended to brush with lemon oil every alternate day.
Incorporating the tenets of oral hygiene to ensure healthy gums and teeth is primary. Beauty comes from the inside out and therefore prioritizing dental health would exhibit cosmetic benefits.