Want to have sparking white teeth and a beautiful smile? Well, you’re not alone. Many people dream of having healthy and beautiful teeth, but few people dare to try chemical whitening.
We are not born with yellow or discoloured teeth. Yet, a variety of factors throughout our lives can contribute to discolouring our teeth. Poor dental hygiene, smoking and coffee, tea and some stain-producing fruit and vegetables, among other factors, can cause discolouration. Ageing can cause the outer layer of enamel to wear away, revealing the yellow colour of the dentine beneath.
No doubt, we all want whiter teeth, but with an abundance of discounted deals and different products on the market all promising a Hollywood smile, it can be hard to tell which treatment or product to go for. Fortunately, there are safe, effective and inexpensive at-home teeth-whitening methods that won’t damage your enamel or do you harm.
Try these easy and natural remedies to help whiten your teeth at home:
Brush after eating and drinking:
To keep your teeth bright and white, brush after every meal and floss once daily. Remove any stain-producing elements as soon as possible to avoid them sticking to and staining the teeth.
Mix one teaspoon of turmeric with the same amount of clear coconut oil and two to three drops of peppermint oil. Use the mixture as a regular toothpaste. It will take care of your enamel, whiten your teeth and freshen your breath.
Mix three tablespoons of lemon juice and one tablespoon of fine salt. Rinse your mouth thoroughly with the mixture after brushing your teeth. Repeat two or three times a week.
Strawberry and lemon paste:
Mash two or three fresh strawberries into a paste. Add the juice of one lemon, a teaspoon of finely ground sea salt, and a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda. Mix well. Put the resulting paste on a toothbrush, and lightly massage your teeth for a few minutes. Rinse your mouth thoroughly. To protect your enamel, do this once every two weeks.
Apply some coconut oil to your teeth before brushing them. Leave it for 15 to 20 minutes and then thoroughly brush with toothpaste. Repeat this twice or three times a week.
Tea tree oil:
Dilute five drops of 100 per cent tea tree oil in half a glass of water and rinse your mouth with it every day after brushing your teeth.
Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide:
Mix a small amount of baking soda with hydrogen peroxide to make a thick and smooth paste. Brush your teeth with the paste as normal. The hydrogen peroxide can bleach your teeth while keeping germs and plaque at bay due to its anti-bacterial qualities.
Banana peel whitener:
Rub the inside of a banana peel onto your teeth from both sides and wait for five to seven minutes. Brush your teeth and rinse your mouth. Repeat as often as you like. Banana peel contains substances that dissolve dental plaque and help maintain the perfect colour of your teeth.
Grind fresh basil leaves to make a purée. Use it regularly instead of your ordinary toothpaste or apply it for five to ten minutes before brushing your teeth as usual.
Mix ground charcoal with water to get a sour-cream texture. Carefully apply it to your teeth. Leave it there for two minutes and then rinse your mouth thoroughly and brush your teeth. Repeat this once or twice a week.
Orange or lemon peel:
Rub some rind from orange or lemon peel on the teeth after brushing and then rinse thoroughly with water. These peels have acidic properties that can help keep teeth clean by stripping plaque and other stains from the surface. Be careful, though, as the acid in the orange or lemon can strip the enamel if left on the teeth for too long without rinsing.
Use fresh Aloe Vera juice or buy natural Aloe Vera gel. Rub some onto your teeth, then massage them with a toothbrush and rinse thoroughly. You can do this after each brushing.
*A version of this article appears in print in the 10 June, 2021 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly