Wanting to have the whitest teeth possible, is as American as apple pie. Tooth-whitening products come with a whole set of problems however. First of all, they’re not FDA approved, and thus don’t undergo the rigorous testing to prove their safety and efficiency that other products are put through. In addition to their lack of FDA approval, they’re costly, and time-consuming. Instead of throwing money at these products, there are ways you can naturally, effectively, and affordably, whiten your teeth at home.
One recipe for an at-home tooth-whitening solution, is as simple as they come. It only requires two ingredients: baking-soda, and strawberries. Adina Carrel, DMD, at Manhattan Dental Arts in New York City weighs in on this home remedy. “this is a fast, cheap way to brighten your smile,” Carrel says. “Be careful not to use this too often, though, as the acid could damage the enamel on your teeth.” She continues. Carrel says that it’s safe to use this whitening recipe no more than once a week.
There are two reasons this simple, at-home, recipe, works. One, the baking soda acts as an exfoliant, scrubbing off residue, such as plaque, and bacteria that causes teeth to darken. The strawberry contains malic acid, which works as a natural bleach, to rid teeth of light stains and darkness. The malic acid is particularly effective when it comes to erasing stains caused by coffee, tea, and cigarettes. The seeds also act as an additional exfoliant, helping work as little sponges wiping away unwanted matter. While this recipe won’t come close in terms of effectiveness to a bleaching from your dentist, it will help you smile a little brighter for cheap.
This simple recipe, found at health.com, requires one ripe strawberry, and a half teaspoon of baking soda. Smash the strawberry into a pulp with a fork or mashing device, and mix it with the baking soda, until they form a sort-of paste. Gently apply the paste to your teeth, using a soft bristled tooth-brush. Leave the mixture on, for at least five minutes. When the five minutes are up, brush your teeth, with toothpaste, to remove the strawberry and baking soda. If some berry seeds remain lodged in your teeth, just use floss to remove them.
So if you’re looking for a gentle, natural tooth whitening option, this one will be perfect for you. Not only will it help remove stains, and lighten your teeth a shade, but it’s inexpensive, and easy to make. Even though it won’t whiten your smile the same way a professional teeth bleaching procedure will, it’s still a worthwhile recipe that can help you look your best for less. Instead of paying outlandish amounts, for at-home whitening products that haven’t conclusively been proven to work, invest in a strawberry and box of baking soda. Not only will your teeth look great, but you’ll feel smart for saving money, and keeping things natural.
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Emily Manke is a health and lifestyle blogger in Portland, OR. Her interests include biking, hiking, cooking, gardening and pets. She is a bit of a health-nut, and loves learning about all things health-related. She recommends thisdentist in Portland.