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Are you keeping your smile tight-lipped because you’re scared to show stained, yellow teeth? Most commercially made teeth whitening products are costly and awful tasting and some even contain harmful chemicals that you really shouldn’t be washing down your sink! The secret that the dental whitening industry doesn’t want you to know is that you can whiten your teeth cheaply, healthily and easily using natural products in your home. Today we share this secret so that you can grin from ear to ear and let your pearly whites shine.

Try these three natural approaches to teeth whitening. They really work!

Why it Works: You’ve probably heard of “oil pulling” and wondered how it can possibly work. It’s quite simple really: the lauric acid in coconut oil draws out the bacteria that causes your teeth to yellow. The gently abrasive nature of the oil will also help to remove plaque build up, leaving your teeth whiter, smoother and shinier. In addition to whitening, oil pulling is believed to be very good for gum health because coconut oil contains antimicrobial properties which can help protect against gingivitis and other gum diseases.

How to do it:
Simply take put a teaspoon of coconut oil in your mouth and swish it for 10 to 20 minutes (the longer the better!). When finished, be sure to spit not swallow because you don’t want all the nasty bacteria you’ve pulled in your stomach. Alternatives such as sesame or olive oil will also work but coconut oil has been found to be the most effective whitening agent.
Why it Works: Why buy commercial whitening toothpaste when you can make your own with simple household ingredients? A mixture of lemon juice and baking soda used as your daily tooth paste will gently bleach stains and rub away plaque build up. The combination of mildly abrasive baking (bicarbonate) soda and the naturally bleaching citric acid in lemon has been proven to do wonders for a whiter smile.

How to do it:
Mix two teaspoons of baking soda with enough lemon juice to make a smooth paste. Apply to your toothbrush and brush teeth as normal. Unlike the coconut oil, “the longer, the better” mantra does not apply in this case because there is a risk that the acid in lemon juice could damage your enamel if left on too long. You can leave the mixture on your teeth for about a minute after brushing to allow the lemon to do its whitening magic but you should rinse thoroughly after that.
One of the key things about whitening your teeth is to prevent further staining from taking place! Here we list the foods you should be eating more of, and the foods you should avoid, in order to keep your smile as bright as possible. It is by no means an exhaustive list but should help you assess whether you’ve got a tooth friendly diet (or whether you need to make a few changes!).

Tooth Friendly Foods:
Some foods, such as strawberries are particularly beneficial as they actually assist in whitening already stained teeth as well as keeping your mouth healthy and preventing future yellowing. Any crunchy fruits and vegetables with high fiber and water content will help to stimulate saliva and keep your mouth clean, healthy and free of bacteria. Raw carrots, celery, coconut, cucumber and peppers are all excellent food choices when you’re working on a whiter smile.

Foods to Avoid:
Tea and coffee stain teeth. It’s a sad fact. But, if you can’t live without your morning cuppa – try drinking it through a straw! This way, you bypass your teeth but sill get your caffeine hit! And, we really don’t need to remind you that cola, soda or any fizzy drinks are a bad idea, do we? Basically, any foods which are high in refined sugars will harm your tooth whitening efforts. Be good to your body and every part of you will be healthier and brighter, especially your teeth!
In summary, if you want a bright white smile, you don’t have to buy commercial tooth bleaching products that are no good for your insides or the environment. These three natural processes can be done cheaply and safely at home and have many health benefits as well as being effective tooth whitening agents. If all else fails, just visit your local dentist. Don’t hide your smile – let it shine!