Who wouldn’t want a whiter, Hollywood-style smile? No wonder then that the tooth whitening market has now grown to become a global phenomenon, allegedly worth billions of dollars. But before you go signing up for that expensive dental procedure or investing in the latest tooth whitening kit, take a moment to consider the potential downsides to most tooth whitening products.

The fact is that many common tooth whitening products use bleaching agents like peroxide to transform your stained teeth into something suitable for a photo shoot. This peroxide, as you might imagine, can have some significant downsides.

For one, tooth whitening procedures can make your teeth extra sensitive for some time after treatment. Secondly, and more importantly, bleaching agents are capable of damaging both your teeth themselves, as well as your gums. Whiter teeth, it seems, has both its risks as well as its benefits.

Fortunately if you want a whiter smile but would rather avoid these potentially very nasty downsides there are a number of ways to get a naturally whiter smile.

In this article we’re going to look at some of the most effective tips of all for ridding yourself of yellow stained teeth once and for all – and all without the use of unpleasant bleaching chemicals.

Big Smile!

Big Smile!

Stain Removal Rather Than Bleaching

If bleaching your teeth comes with its risks, what are the alternatives? How can one still benefit from a whiter smile but without taking risks with your oral health?

The first strategy is to rely on stain removal products – most commonly toothpastes. The better whitening toothpastes don’t leave the stains on your teeth – and simply removing their colour – as bleaching agents do.

Instead, as you brush, the whitening toothpaste gently lifts the stains themselves from your teeth, naturally whitening them without putting your teeth at risk. As a result these products produce largely the same end result as bleaching, but with far fewer potential downsides.

Relative Dentin Abrasivity (RDA)

Different toothpastes have varying levels of abrasion to them. More abrasive toothpastes can often be better at ridding your teeth of stains, but this same abrasiveness can also wear away tooth dentin, causing problems all of their own.

This means that when it comes to tooth whitening, finding a less abrasive toothpaste should be considered a priority; after all there seems little point in ending up with whiter teeth if they’re also far less healthy thanks to the process.

The metric used by the FDA to measure the abrasiveness of a toothpaste is the so-called “Relative Dentin Abrasivity” or “RDA” for short. Sadly, while an RDA score is required for toothpastes sold in the US, it currently isn’t a legal requirement to publish. Try looking online to find tables that display the RDA of various toothpastes and aim to use those brands with the lowest RDA score.

Firm Foods

There are a number of foods which can help to naturally whiten your teeth on account of their physical properties. One of the best of these are apples. As you crunch your way through a firm apple – such as a Granny Smiths – the surface of the fruit serves to gently and naturally sweep away stains and so make your teeth naturally whiter in colour.

They say that an apple a day can keep the doctor away – well it also now seems that the very same fruit will also help to keep the dentist away too!

An apple a day!

An apple a day!

Strawberries

Oddly, many people recommend eating strawberries as a way to whiten the teeth. The reason for this seems to come from the acid which is present in the fruit, and which therefore helps to rid your teeth of their stains. Some people recommend brushing your teeth with the pulp of a crushed strawberry while others simply like to consume the fruit as it is.

Whatever you do, there can be few more enjoyable ways to whiten your smile than to sink your teeth into a bowlful of fresh, sweet, juicy strawberries. It’s also a lot cheaper that buying a tooth whitening kit from the local pharmacy.

Avoid Staining

Lastly of course if you want a naturally whiter smile it makes sense to try and avoid common sources of yellow, stained teeth to begin with. To avoid further staining you teeth try avoiding foods and beverages with strong dyes in them such as tea, coffee and red wine.

Smokers should also note that the tobacco smoke you inhale can have a negative impact on your smile. Most smokers will have observed the yellow staining to their fingers after a heavy evening of smoking. Now just imagine what these same nicotine stains can do for your white smile. That’s right; if you want a naturally whiter smile you’d be well-advised to quit smoking once and for all.

About The Author

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I've worked as an Occupational Therapist for many years dealing with physical and mental health patients, both in hospitals and the community. Living a healthy, well balanced life with a good diet, regular exercise and a taking a positive outlook are crucial to becoming a very well being indeed - sometimes easier said than done!

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