We’d all love to have a brighter smile, but not everyone is equally enthusiastic about the process and chemicals that are often involved. Yes, we’re talking about teeth whitening, which in the age of social media (Instagram, Facebook, TikTok), has become the number one dental treatment for people under the age of forty. Its popularity isn’t really surprising because every photo or video that goes online is there for the world to see and who wouldn’t want to put their best foot, err, best smile forward.
While heading to your dentist for a professional teeth whitening is far from dangerous, and does provide the most effective and fastest results, the extremely health conscious among us may seek a more natural alternative to bleaching chemicals. If you fall into this category and aren’t down with chemical whitening, then keep reading as we go over some of the most popular natural ways you can achieve a whiter smile.
Natural teeth whitening toothpastes
What could be simpler than taking something you already do everyday (twice we hope) and leveraging it to do extra work in the whitening department. Of course, just brushing your teeth will already help whiten, or at least keep your smile white, but specifically formulated toothpastes will do a much better job. Natural toothpastes aren’t typically defined by what’s in them, but rather what isn’t, and should not contain foaming agents like sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) or diethanolamine. Artificial colors and sweeteners are also frowned upon. “Fluoride free” isn’t necessary as it’s naturally occurring mineral and has been proven to strengthen enamel, so any negatives are likely outweighed by the positives. Ingredients that are beneficial for whitening include activated charcoal, and various oils like coconut oil, tea tree oil, sage oil, mint oil and lemon peel oil. Look for brands like Burt’s Bees, Kiss My face, Tom’s of Maine and more.
Activated charcoal: Is the hype real?
When it comes to naturally whitening your teeth, activated charcoal is one of the best things you can use. It can really get your teeth white and best of all it’s non-toxic and natural. You can find it blended into toothpastes, but it’s usually found in powder form which is also the most effective. You simply wet your toothbrush, apply some charcoal powder and brush as you normally would (just don’t do it too vigorously). It’s not as fast or quite as effective as a whitening (bleaching) treatment at your dentist but over time and use your teeth will become noticeably brighter. Activated charcoal is a great choice to use alongside a natural whitening toothpaste.
What else can I do to whiten my teeth naturally?
If you’re already using a natural whitening toothpaste and brushing with activated charcoal powder you can think about adding an oil pulling routine with coconut oil to your routine. Not only does the coconut oil work to pull stains from your enamel, it will also make your mouth healthier as a whole. We’ve heard (but haven’t tested) brushing with baking soda can produce results as well.
If you’re serious about whitening your teeth (and about your overall oral health) making sure your diet is healthy is a great step to take. Eating fruits and veggies that are crunchy will naturally scrub your teeth and rub away plaque. Also avoiding teeth staining foods and beverages will also help keep your pearly whites shining.
A strict teeth cleaning regiment that includes rinsing after meals or beverages (other than water), brushing regularly (and correctly), and flossing should always be included, not just when trying to whiten one’s teeth. Regular dental checkups for professional cleanings are also vital, as a large part of enjoying a white smile is preventing stains in the first place.
We recommend trying out these natural methods for whiter teeth before turning to a bleach based whitening method if you want to stay organic. Speaking with your dentist about options is also a great idea. Keep in mind that natural whitening is a process that takes a bit of time, but if you keep at it, dramatic results and a bright white smile are possible.