Products aimed at whitening your teeth and beautifying your smile line the shelves of drugstores these days. Many of these teeth whitening products contain chemicals that can be harmful to your health and can ultimately lead to eroding the enamel on your teeth.
Even, professional whitening performed by a dentist can lead to painful sensitivity, and the methods used are not natural in the slightest. However, don’t give up: for a brighter, whiter grin, there is a once-a-week method that can produce flashing pearly whites the natural way and only a few ingredients such as baking soda and a 3% hydrogen peroxide are needed.
People can naturally and cheaply whiten their teeth at home using just two simple, all-natural ingredients and a toothbrush. These are steps to be taken:
1. Tablespoon of baking soda (bicarbonate of soda)
A study checked the effect that toothpaste containing baking soda had on removing tooth stain and teeth whitening. The study found a significant improvement in teeth shade score and tooth stain reductions of this group in comparison to the other group that used silica based toothpaste.
The plaque removal effectiveness of baking soda was significantly greater than the non-baking soda products.
Another study indicated that baking soda has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties that can help reduce infections.
Since baking soda is alkaline, it neutralizes the acids in the mouth, thus reducing the risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Baking soda can also be used as a general kitchen medicine.
Baking soda is abrasive. However, compared to commercial toothpastes, baking soda is much less abrasive, and therefore healthier for the teeth.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) comes in a variety of grades designed to address its different uses for disinfection and sterilization. 3% hydrogen peroxide food grade can help to whiten the teeth if used carefully. That means you should avoid higher concentration and not use it too often. Higher concentrations can damage tooth enamel.
A study examined the effect of 10, 20 and 30% hydrogen peroxide solutions on human enamel for different periods of time. The research found that higher concentrations of hydrogen peroxide solutions and longer period of time caused more damage to teeth.
The researchers recommended that to ensure tooth whitening, use low concentration of hydrogen peroxide and shorten treatment time to reduce the possibility of teeth damage but reach the required change in color.
Another study checked various concentrations of hydrogen peroxide gel (5, 10, 15 or 25%) on tooth whitening. It found that a person would need 12 applications of the 5% gel to achieve teeth whitening in comparison to one application for the 35% gel.
This means that to prevent damage to the teeth, you will need to use more low-concentration treatments for shorter time in order to achieve your desired teeth whiteness.
Teeth Whitening at Home – The Method
Place a tablespoon of baking soda into a small bowl and add a small amount of 3% hydrogen peroxide food grade.
Mix until you get a paste of a thick consistency.
Put the paste onto the toothbrush and brush all of your teeth thoroughly, just as you would with regular toothpaste.
Leave the paste on your teeth for 3 to 5 minutes. Make sure to not swallow any hydrogen peroxide.
Rinse your mouth out well with plenty of water, and you’re done! That is all there is to it.
Whitening Teeth with Baking Soda & Hydrogen Peroxide – Things to Consider
This natural whitening method should be performed no more than once per week in order to get a bright smile without harming the protective enamel covering the teeth.
It is recommended that the use of a fresh, clean toothbrush first time trying the method and dedicating that toothbrush specifically to being used for whitening. In other words, do not use your daily-use toothbrush for your whitening treatment.
Swallowing small amounts of household (3%) hydrogen peroxide is not poisonous to humans. It can cause some irritation and cause a lot of foam in the mouth. If your child swallows some hydrogen peroxide, usually giving a small drink of water or milk is enough to remove the irritation. However, ingesting concentrated hydrogen peroxide (more than 10%) can result in severe injuries like ulcers, internal burning, vomiting, or intense abdominal pain.
This treatment is not recommended for people who wear dental braces, as it would cause uneven whitening that would be noticeable once the braces were removed.
After just one month of use (only four treatments), the person should begin to see results in the form of a whiter, brighter smile.
Some people use lemon juice along with baking soda as a natural toothpaste to whiten teeth. They usually mix 1 tablespoon of baking soda and add the juice of half a lemon to clean their teeth. But you need to be aware that lemon is a naturally acidic fruit.
A study found that the acidic nature of lemon juice has the potential to weaken tooth enamel. However, the study also noted that apple juice and orange juice can also affect the integrity of tooth enamel. It is also important to note that the research involved soaking a tooth in an undiluted lemon juice for 7 days.
So, when used infrequently, adding lemon juice to baking soda to help whiten the teeth may not have any negative result on oral health.