Really Useful Cleaning Hacks For Your Teeth

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We all know to brush our teeth when we get up, and before bed. At least we hope so! But there are also lots of additional teeth cleaning hacks you can use to make your pearly whites even whiter. After all, who doesn’t want to have whiter, cleaner, shinier and healthier teeth? Celebrities from Hollywood A-listers to Z-list reality stars all sport whiter than white teeth. And, given what an essential part of your appearance teeth are, if they don’t look their best, it can lead to you feeling self-conscious.

Strawberries

Not just something to enjoy with cream along with a glass of Pimm’s at Wimbledon, darling. It turns out the humble strawberry can actually help to whiten your teeth. Strawberries are full of something called malic acid which can not only prevent new stains but can remove old ones. But, it’s not enough just to eat them as they are. The most effective way to use them is to crush them up with baking soda to form a kind of strawberry toothpaste.

Sunflower Oil

While oil pulling for teeth has become something of a celebrity fad, it turns out you don’t need fancy oils to do this. An ancient teeth cleaning method which has its origins in India, swishing sunflower oil around your mouth for 20 minutes can help to make your teeth whiter. The idea is that bacteria, plaque and tartar are attracted to the oil, which you then spit out into the sink. Well, if it’s worked for 3,000 years…

Chewing Gum

Unless you live in Singapore where chewing gum is banned, this is an easy way to get rid of bacteria on your teeth after eating. Chewing gum naturally stimulates saliva production, which is vital for getting rid of all of those little bits of food that get stuck between your teeth after a meal. Look out for chewing gum with xylitol in it. It’s an ingredient which helps to neutralize the acid in your mouth and prevent bacteria from staying on your teeth.

Basil

Not only does this herb taste pretty good on pizza, but it’s also useful for improving dental health. It’s a natural remedy to help if you suffer from bleeding gums. Because it has natural antibacterial properties, it can help to reduce the number of harmful bacteria in your mouth. It can also help if you’re suffering from toothache. Don’t just use it straight from the plant though. Dry out the leaves before crushing them and mixing with sunflower oil.

Green Tea

Green Tea is well known for its health-giving properties. Studies have looked into the benefits of green tea for all sorts of things including Alzheimer’s, eye and bone health, and even cancer prevention. So, it’s perhaps no surprise that green tea is also beneficial for your teeth. A study of Japanese men found those who drank more green tea were more likely to have healthier gums and teeth. It’s all because of an antioxidant called catechin which is found in the brew.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate is another of those substances which is said to have a huge number of health benefits. Look for chocolate which is at least 75 percent dark chocolate to get the most benefits. It contains tannin which reduces gum inflammation and can help to prevent tooth decay by reducing the amount of acid in the mouth. It should also make your breath smell nicer because it contains polyphenols, which neutralize microorganisms which can cause your mouth to smell less than fresh.

Liver

Hannibal may be a crazy cannibal serial killer, but at least he has really nice teeth. Liver is one of life’s superfoods because of the high number of nutrients it contains. The meat contains lots of Vitamin D and Vitamin A, which are both vital for oral health. Vitamin A can help to prevent gum disease, while Vitamin D is important for teeth and bone health. If you don’t fancy liver with fava beans, you could always take cod liver oil instead.

Baking Soda

There’s a reason that a number of toothpaste companies add baking soda to their products. Not only does it help your chocolate muffins to rise, but it can also help to prevent plaque building up on your teeth and remove stains. Add a little baking soda into your toothpaste or look out for a toothpaste which already has it. Then, rinse with lukewarm water. You could try adding baking soda to your dental routine once a week for whitening results.

Lemon

Some people suggest using lemon to whiten your teeth, but many dentists don’t agree. While it may well help to make your teeth less yellow, lemon contains citric acid, so it can wear away the calcium from your teeth. Once that calcium is lost, you won’t be able to get it back. Even water with lemon can be harmful. If you do want to try it, it’s apparently best to drink cold lemon water rather than warm.

Apples

The old adage goes that an apple a day keeps the doctor away. But, it turns out, it could also keep the dentist away. The acidic content in the fruit is said to help to keep them white. Because the fruit requires a lot of chewing to eat, it acts in the same way that chewing gum does, increasing saliva flow in the mouth. This, in turn, reduces the number of bacteria floating around in there.

Charcoal

It might seem odd to put something which is black on your teeth to whiten them, but charcoal is understood to have whitening properties. The chemicals in charcoal can prevent discoloration. Simply mix some charcoal powder with your toothpaste and brush as usual. Apparently, you should leave on for three minutes to let the charcoal bind to the nasties on your teeth before you spit them out. But, make sure you rinse well, otherwise, you may well give people a shock when you smile.

Cheese

It’s well known that milk is good for your bones. But, cheese is also good for your bones and the health of your teeth. Dairy products, including milk and cheese have calcium, which strengthens the calcium on your teeth as well as lactic acid. Not only that, but the chewing action when you eat cheese prompts saliva production which helps to wash away bacteria. A study found that those who chewed cheese had less plaque on their teeth


Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera has been used in medicine for centuries. Its healing properties are well-known by anyone who has ever had a bad case of sunburn. But, not only can it help to ease the pain of forgetting to reapply your sunscreen, Aloe Vera has also been suggested by some practitioners as a natural method for whitening your teeth. However, it’s definitely not one to try for pregnant women as Aloe Vera is said to harmful.

Coconut Oil

Probably the teeth whitening method which has had the highest profile in recent times, oil pulling using coconut oil is the technique celebrities including Gwyneth Paltrow and Shailene Woodley have been using to get their megawatt smiles. Coconut oil is one of a number of oils said to have properties which help to reduce plaque, prevent tooth decay and fight gum disease. You just need to swish the oil around in your mouth for a while and then rinse.

Banana Peel

There’s a good reason why athletes go bananas over bananas. The yellow fruits are a good source of potassium and magnesium, which can both help to prevent muscle stress and strain. They also have a calming effect as they contain a substance called tryptophan which converts to the calming hormones melatonin and serotonin. Plus, when you’ve finished eating them, don’t throw the skins away. Rubbing banana skin on your teeth is said to whiten them!

Turmeric

Known for its health-giving properties, turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory which can help the body fight off infection. Simply dip your toothbrush into some turmeric powder and brush with it for a few minutes. Then rinse and brush your teeth as usual. The spice is said to have both whitening properties and a calming effect on inflamed gums. Many people mix it with baking soda and coconut oil. A study found that people who used turmeric mouthwash had fewer gum problems.

Clove Oil

A natural remedy used in dental care for centuries, clove oil is particularly good for toothache. If you’ve got toothache and can’t get a dental appointment straight away, clove oil can provide some relief in the meantime. Just dab some on a clean piece of cotton and hold it against the gums where the pain is for a while. You can also use a whole clove if you don’t have any clove oil to hand. It works because it is a natural anaesthetic.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple Cider Vinegar is a remedy that seems to help countless ailments from helping sunburn to aiding digestion as well as perhaps helping with weight loss and making your hair shinier. Gargling with it is meant to naturally whiten teeth as well as getting rid of germs and bacteria. However, because it’s also an acid, using too frequently isn’t recommended as it can break down tooth enamel. Mixing with water and then rinsing is not as harsh on teeth.

Walnuts

Nuts can be great for teeth health because they contain copious quantities of folic acid, calcium and fiber. Walnuts have all of that and more, including iron, magnesium vitamin E and zinc. They are also said to be a natural teeth whitener. Apparently, you just crush up some walnuts and rub them gently around your teeth and gums to reduce stains and prevent the growth of bacteria. We guess you’d have to be careful not to get any stuck between your teeth though.

Celerey

Not only is celery said to be good for weight loss because you consume more calories eating it than it actually contains, but it is also beneficial for teeth health. Chewing celery increases the production of saliva so that your mouth can combat bacteria which causes plaque, gum disease and bad breath. Chewing on celery after finishing the rest of your lunch can help to prevent tooth decay. Plus, because celery has little ridges, it helps to naturally massage gums and clean teeth.

Orange Peel

While you painstakingly peel your oranges to remove the peel before eating an orange, don’t throw that peel in the bin! It could actually be used to help to whiten your teeth. Rubbing orange peel onto your teeth is said to naturally reduce stains. Plus, the Vitamin C is said to reduce bacteria.  But, because oranges are naturally acidic, they can also remove enamel from your teeth, which could lead to them looking more yellow in the long run.

Salt

Salt has been used for centuries for its preservative properties as well as to provide flavor. But, it’s also understood to be a natural teeth whitener which can be used in place of toothpaste if your tube should happen to be squeezed dry. The gritty texture of salt is said to be beneficial in removing plaque without damaging teeth. Sea salt is meant to be the best type to use and, if you’re worried about abrasion, it’s advised to dissolve the salt first.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen Peroxide has been used for years as an antiseptic to treat small cuts. Usually sold in little brown bottles at pharmacies, it can aid teeth whitening. But, it can also have side effects for some people, including gum irritation and tooth sensitivity, particularly for those who already have sensitive teeth. But for those who don’t have any side effects, it’s generally thought to be relatively safe to use as long as you don’t brush with it too often.

Steak

If you need an excuse to go out for a nice, juicy steak, then how about this? Eating steak is said by the American Dental Association to be a good way to look after your teeth and your jaw. Red meat contains quantities of phosphorus which helps to protect tooth enamel. Not only that, but the very act of chewing the steak helps to strengthen jaw muscles. Studies have shown that the more you chew, the stronger and healthier your mouth is.

Gummy Bears

While it may seem strange to recommend eating sweets as a way to improve the cleanliness of your teeth, studies on schoolchildren where they were given gummy bears three times a day showed a reduction in plaque. But, don’t go eating just any sweets! Gummy bears contain xylitol, an artificial sweetener used in chewing gum and some toothpastes which can help to keep a neutral PH level in the mouth and stop plaque from sticking to teeth.

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