It makes sense why everyone wants white teeth. Our society is so driven by looks and first impressions that lots of people would do anything to get an advantage and get ahead.
And make no mistake – having pearly white teeth is an advantage. After all, you never see a famous actor or entertainer with stained yellow teeth, right?
Unfortunately, a lot of the options that exist for whitening teeth by non-natural means (either over the counter or at the dentist) come with nasty drawbacks.
First, while they might work for a little bit, the effects quickly fade and you find yourself back at square one.
Second, many of these methods wind up leaving your teeth feeling so sensitive that eating anything becomes painful – not what you want and maybe not worth it for marginally whiter teeth!
Luckily, there are other options.
Here are a few of the best natural ways you can whiten your teeth from the comfort of your own home.
While they might not get blindingly white like the dentist or some other extreme techniques can reach, they also don’t come with the drawbacks of those extreme methods.
However, they will noticeably whiten your teeth and make your smile look that much better and more radiant.
Before we get into exactly how to whiten your teeth, let’s look at why they get discolored in the first place.
What Makes Your Teeth Turn Yellow?
What shade your teeth are depends on a lot of things. Everything from your brushing and flossing habits to your genes to what you eat and drink contributes to how your teeth look.
Lots of people think that teeth begin to look yellow because the enamel gets stained, but that actually plays a smaller role than you would think.
Your enamel is the hard, white coating on the outside of your teeth that protects them. Underneath that is a layer of dentin, which supports your enamel and contains the nerves in your teeth.
Dentin is yellow, while enamel is white. So while some kinds of food and drinks can stain your enamel, that’s not the biggest factor that causes teeth to turn yellow.
Rather, it’s the gradual erosion of the white enamel on your teeth that uncovers the yellow dentin and leads to your teeth looking more yellow instead of white.
Below you’ll find natural remedies for whitening teeth that have already lost some enamel and look yellow because of dentin. The best way to avoid further yellowing teeth and keeping your pearly white enamel strong is practicing good oral hygiene and seeing the dentist frequently.
4 Natural Ways To Whiten Teeth
1. Coconut Oil Pulling
This is one of the more surprising ways to whiten your teeth, but it can really work to improve your oral hygiene and make your teeth appear whiter.
The jury is out on the taste of coconut oil – some people hate it and some people don’t mind it.
Whatever your opinion, there’s no doubt that it will noticeably improve the color of your teeth. It won’t whiten them as much as some over the counter treatments or a dentist will, but it also won’t give you terrible side effects.
Coconut oil pulling also has antibacterial properties, which kills off bacteria in your mouth that cause tooth and gum decay and keeps your breath smelling fresh and clean.
What you need:
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
What to do:
When you wake up in the morning, add this to your routine before you brush your teeth.
Take your tablespoon of coconut oil and put it into your mouth, letting it soften and spread out while it’s in there.
Then, swish it around in your mouth. Try to get it through all your teeth – you can even pretend like you’re flossing with it to swish it through the gaps between your teeth and your gums.
Swish and swirl the coconut oil around in your mouth for at least 10 minutes, then spit it out, rinse, and brush normally.
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar appears on these lists so often that you might be sick of seeing it, but the facts bear it out: it’s useful for all sorts of medical maladies and conditions.
Discolored or yellow teeth is no exception.
Apple cider vinegar works to clean your teeth and gums, and has anti-biotic properties that help to keep your mouth clean and healthy.
Plus, since it’s a natural acid, it helps to remove stains from things like coffee and cigarettes.
Apple cider vinegar is so effective because its compounds will kill off all the bacteria you don’t want in your mouth, while also promoting the growth of good bacteria that keeps your mouth healthy.
Just make sure to be careful – apple cider vinegar is an acid – so brushing too hard with it or after using it can strip enamel from your teeth.
The secret to getting apple cider vinegar to naturally whiten your teeth is persistence. As long as you stick to a routine and use it every day, you’ll see real results in about a month. Use it in moderation and take care with how you brush and you too can enjoy its teeth whitening properties.
What you need:
Apple cider vinegar
What to do:
Brush your teeth normally, but substitute apple cider vinegar for regular toothpaste. Take care to brush lighter than you would normally, as apple cider vinegar can damage your enamel if you brush too hard.
After you’re finished brushing, rinse out your mouth and your toothbrush and then brush again with regular toothpaste. Try to use a toothpaste without fluoride in it for the best results.
3. Baking Soda, Salt, And Strawberry Paste
It might be surprising to see strawberries on this list, but they’re actually great for improving your oral hygiene and making your teeth look whiter.
That’s because they’re packed with vitamin C, which can help get rid of the plaque from your teeth that’s making them look discolored.
The salt in this paste is amazing for scrubbing away the leftover food and plaque that makes your eeth stained, and the baking soda will help whiten your teeth.
If that’s not enough, strawberries also contain something called malic acid which can help get rid of the stains on the enamel of your teeth.
What you need:
1 pinch of salt
½ teaspoon of baking soda
2 or 3 large strawberries
What to do:
First, crush up your strawberries so they’re a pulpy, juicy mess, then add the salt and the baking soda. Get rid of extra saliva in your mouth, then load up your toothbrush with the mixture and put it onto your teeth.
Let it sit in your mouth for about 5 minutes, then rinse it out. Try to do this every night for the best results.
4. Lemon Juice And Baking Soda Mix
This is the second time you’ll see baking soda in this list – and for good reason.
That’s because baking soda acts as something called an “abrasive” – it works to scrape off all the gunk you don’t want on your teeth and leave them looking whiter and healthier.
The lemon juice in this recipe is acidic, which is a kind of natural bleach that will whiten your teeth. The baking soda, which is naturally basic instead of acidic, balances that out to a degree and keeps your mouth looking and feeling its best.
What you need:
3 or 4 teaspoons of baking soda
What to do:
Combine the teaspoons of baking soda with the lemon juice. Use enough lemon juice so that you make a paste that you can easily apply to a toothbrush and then to your teeth.
Make sure to get rid of all the extra saliva in your mouth, and then apply the paste to your teeth with a toothbrush. Don’t leave it on any longer than a minute or so, and immediately rinse out your mouth afterwards – you don’t want the acidic lemon juice messing with your enamel.
You can use this recipe without lemon juice, but I think it’s most effective when you include it.
Good luck! Leave comments with your favorite teeth whitening strategies and whether these worked for you!
Remember, the most important ingredient is patience and persistence. Try to pick one of these remedies and do it consistently every day over at least a month to see the results you’re looking for.
The Best Natural Ways To Whiten Teeth At Home
- Coconut oil pulling
- Apple cider vinegar
- Baking soda, salt, and strawberry paste
- Lemon juice and baking soda mix