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  • Healthy, Clean Teeth
    Are your pearly whites actually pearly white or are they a dull, yellow-gray color? Before spending hundreds of dollars on whitening procedures at the dentist’s office, try one of these whitening methods at home. You may be surprised at the difference it makes. Read >>

Healthy, Clean Teeth

Tips for a whiter, brighter smile.

Are your pearly whites actually pearly white or are they a dull, yellow-gray color? Age, poor hygiene, and eating certain foods can lead to teeth that are anything but white. But you don’t need to be insecure about the appearance of your teeth. There are many things you can do to whiten and brighten your smile.

Before spending hundreds of dollars on whitening procedures at the dentist’s office, try one of these whitening methods at home. You may be surprised at the difference it makes.

Baking Soda

Many toothpastes contain baking soda, but you can harness more of its natural whitening capabilities by brushing with baking soda alone. The abrasiveness of baking soda scrubs away surface stains and removes plaque. You won’t see much of a difference overnight, but give it some time and your teeth should become whiter.

To make your own paste, combine one teaspoon of baking soda with a couple teaspoons of water and brush several times a week. If you don’t like the taste of plain baking soda, look for a toothpaste that contains sodium bicarbonate.

Oil Pulling

Oil pulling is an ancient remedy to improve the health of your teeth and mouth and remove toxins from your body. Any type of oil will work, but most people use either coconut, sesame, or olive. Oils are known to remove the bacteria that cause plaque, yellow teeth, and gingivitis. And yes, they’re safe to use on your teeth daily.

All you have to do for this method is put a tablespoon of oil in your mouth and move it back and forth between your teeth for 15 to 20 minutes.

Hydrogen Peroxide

You may be used to using hydrogen peroxide to disinfect cuts and scrapes, but this natural bleaching agent can also be used to kill the bacteria in your mouth that contribute to discolored teeth. However, you should be aware that a high concentration of hydrogen peroxide can lead to tooth sensitivity or gum irritation. To avoid negative side effects, never use a solution that contains more than three percent H2O2 (hydrogen peroxide).

Want to give it a shot? Try occasionally swishing or brushing with hydrogen peroxide. For an even more noticeable effect, brush with a paste made with two parts hydrogen peroxide and one part baking soda. You can also purchase toothpastes that include these two ingredients.

Whitening Strips

Looking for an easy-to-use, relatively inexpensive way to whiten your teeth and remove stains? Try whitening strips. Apply strips covered in a gel that contains peroxide and other whitening agents to your teeth for several minutes every day for a week or longer. You’ll see a difference in your tooth color that lasts for months.

Whitening Kits

Whitening kits purchased over-the-counter provide more dramatic results but cost more and take longer. Made with carbamide peroxide, some kits require you to brush a gel on your teeth, while others place the gel in a tray that’s molded to your teeth. Either way, you leave the solution on your teeth for a minimum of 30 minutes a day for at least a week.

Brush and Floss

Some tooth yellowing occurs naturally with age or from stains caused by foods and drinks. But most discoloration is due to plaque build-up. Brushing twice a day and flossing once a day help prevent plaque buildup, remove stains, and reduce the amount of bacteria in your mouth. Regular visits to the dentist are also an important part of keeping your teeth healthy, clean, and sparkly.