Over the last five years or so, home teeth whitening kits have gained in popularity as people try to give themselves that perfect movie star smile. But there are natural home remedies for whitening teeth that won’t cost you an arm and a leg and which many people swear are just as good as store-bought treatments.
Many natural home remedies for whitening teeth use various different types of fruit to achieve their effect. This is because the acids in the fruit help to dissolve stains on the surface of the enamel. The actress Catherine Zeta Jones has stated on the Tyra Banks Show that she uses mashed strawberries to whiten her teeth.
Other people claim that brushing orange peel on the teeth has the same effect. It is not recommended that you brush your teeth for 20 minutes after trying either method, as the acid can dissolve the enamel, which could end up being brushed away. After 20 minutes or so, the saliva in your mouth will have neutralized the effects of the acid, making it safe to brush or floss.
One potentially unsafe home remedy for whitening teeth involves brushing lemon juice onto them. Lemon juice is very acidic, and could actually dissolve the calcium in the teeth. This would make them look whiter, it is true, but at the cost of their structural integrity. People who use this method are more susceptible to tooth decay and broken or chipped teeth due to the weakening of the material of the tooth.
Salts as a Home Remedy for Whitening Teeth
At the other end of the pH spectrum from acidic fruits are alkaline salts, specifically bicarbonate of soda, commonly known as baking soda, and common table salt, sodium chloride. Baking soda is sometimes used in toothpastes, such as Arm & Hammer brand toothpaste, as a whitening agent.
It is very abrasive, so you need to be careful that you don’t wear away the enamel by brushing too hard. Sprinkling a little salt on your toothpaste (sea salt works best) can help get rid of tartar and plaque better than just the toothpaste alone, and can also kill the germs that cause bad breath.
Hydrogen Peroxide as a Home Remedy for Whitening Teeth
Our final home remedy for whitening teeth is hydrogen peroxide, sometimes used as a bleaching agent for hair. Make sure the peroxide is diluted with at least 1 part water to every 1 part peroxide and be very careful not to swallow the solution, as it could lead to blindness and even death. It tastes pretty horrible too. But people who use it claim good results for it.