Tooth whitening is an effective cosmetic procedure of lightening your teeth and getting rid of stains as well as discoloration. The popularity of this procedure has increased rapidly due to its ability to lighten teeth, improving their appearance. Most dentists are recommending tooth whitening to individuals with yellow teeth to restore their natural look.
Whitening is a procedure that should be performed from time to time if you’re to maintain the natural look of your teeth.
In most cases, teeth start to yellow with age, but several strategies can derail this process or even stop it.
What causes teeth to turn yellow?
Teeth turn yellow due to enamel thinning and stains, and this tends to hasten with age.
Enamel, the exterior layer of teeth, is white, and its primary function is to protect the inner layer of the tooth. Below the enamel is dentin, which is a layer of tissue yellow-brown in color. Whenever the enamel layer begins to thin or wear away, the white color of the teeth tends to disappear, causing it to look darker.
Some of the things that cause enamel to thin or wear away include gum disease, acidic foods, and aging.
Some foods and drinks such as coffee can lead to the staining of teeth. Such foods and beverages are likely to wear down the enamel, causing the teeth to have a yellowish appearance.
Besides food and beverages, smoking and tobacco products are other causes of stains, not forgetting the various types of antibiotics.
In this article, we’re going to look at the natural ways to whiten your teeth.
- Modify your diet
Get rid of foods that can cause teeth staining to prevent it from escalating further. Foods and drinks rich in tannins are known to stain the teeth, and therefore you should exclude them in your diet. Beverages such as dark sodas, coffee, and juices should be avoided as they can also cause teeth to stain.
Acidic foods are the other category of foods you should eradicate from your diet if you’re to maintain the white color of your teeth. This is because frequent consumption of these foods causes the enamel to wear down, exposing the dentin, the inner layer, which is yellow-brown. Some of the acidic foods include citric, soda, and coffee. Alternatively, brush your teeth after taking such beverages or foods to prevent stains from forming on teeth.
Brushing should be done 30-60 minutes after taking acidic foods or drinks since acids are known to weaken enamel, and brushing immediately can damage the enamel further.
Avoid smoking or taking tobacco products as they are known to cause nicotine stains. Smoking and taking of tobacco products can cause tooth decay and gum disease, which are known to weaken the enamel and bring about other oral health concerns.
- Practice oil pulling
Oil pulling is the practice of rinsing the mouth with oil to get rid of bacteria, dirt, and debris. Oil pulling is not intended to substitute flossing or frequent brushing of teeth. Studies have revealed that rinsing your mouth with specific oils can, to some extent, whiten your teeth.
Although there is no scientific evidence that supports the belief that oil pulling eradicates cavities, whitens teeth, and boosts oral health as well as well-being, there is a need to try it since it doesn’t have harmful side effects.
Rinsing the mouth with oil should be done after brushing. Coconut oil, sesame oil, and sunflower oil are some of the most appropriate oils used for oil pulling.
- Brush with baking soda
Baking soda is known to get rid of stains on the surface of the teeth. Some people are afraid of baking soda because it is too harsh and the fear that it may wear down the enamel, but most studies have found it useful in getting rid of any form of teeth stains.
Besides getting rid of stains, baking soda helps fight bacteria, curb plaque, and avert tooth decay, which are the primary causes of yellow teeth.
- Use of hydrogen peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is a less severe bleach that can get rid of stains and, thereafter restore the teeth natural look. Hydrogen peroxide should be used alongside the baking soda if youâre to achieve maximum whitening. It should only be done 2-3 times a week. This is because when used for a long time, hydrogen peroxide can enhance tooth sensitivity.
- Use fruits to whiten the teeth.
Papayas and pineapples contain papain and bromelain enzymes, which are useful when it comes to teeth whitening.
Recent studies found out that solutions rich in these enzymes are effective in whitening the teeth. However, there is a need for more research to ascertain whether these enzymes are useful or not.
- Embrace proper oral hygiene
To combat teeth from turning yellow, it is crucial to maintain the recommended oral hygiene. Flossing and brushing teeth regularly can help to avert gum disease, eradicate stains, and even protect the tooth enamel.
Proper oral hygiene entails the following:
- Brushing should be done for more than once in a day. During this time, keep in mind clean the areas surrounding the gums, not forgetting the backs of the teeth.
- Use of fluoride toothpaste. Fluoride can prevent tooth decay. Although some people are reluctant to use fluoride, dentists recommend its use due to the numerous oral health benefits it offers.
- Flossing is also part of proper oral hygiene as it helps to get rid of plaque sandwiched between the teeth.
Not many people have naturally white teeth since they tend to turn yellow with age. Despite this, proper oral hygiene alongside regular dental examinations can derail this process and ensure the teeth remain white for a long time.
Having yellow teeth does not necessarily mean that you have an oral health concern, but through regular examination, a lake forest dentist can access whether you have an enamel loss or tooth decay.
The use of natural remedies can help people to whiten their teeth in the comfort of their homes and within their budget. But before the use of such medications, it is essential to ensure they have no side effects on your oral health. You learn about this by consulting your dentist. Dentists can also recommend alternative products that can be used in place of natural remedies as long as teeth whitening is concerned.