The Truth Behind “Natural Whitening” Fads | Dentist Glen Burnie

Cosmetic Dentist in Glen Burnie, MD

It seems like there is a new headline nearly every week featuring someone who swears their teeth are whiter and brighter due to their natural home remedy for stain removal. These articles showcase the idea that whitening can be cheap and easy, if in some cases unpleasant. It can be tempting to consider trying for brighter, whiter teeth without investing time and money on in-office or at-home whitening under a dentist’s care. However, before you pin your hopes on one of these “natural whitening” methods, take a look at the truth behind some of the recent fads.

Fad 1: Oil Pulling

Oil pulling has been cropping up in headlines for months with claims of a wide variety of potential health benefits. It is a very old folk remedy in which a person swishes a tablespoon of edible oil, such as coconut, sunflower, olive, etc., in their mouth and between teeth for up to 20 minutes daily.

Despite the number of years this practice has existed and the number of health issues it purports to treat, there is no evidence that oil pulling whitens teeth or improves health.

Fad 2: Fruits

Due to celebrity endorsement, some people have begun to try rubbing mashed strawberries on their teeth to try to achieve a whiter smile. Others are using lemon or orange peels, and still others tout the virtues of eating pineapple or swishing apple cider vinegar.

However, there is no science to support any of these claims. In fact, one recent study found that brushing with a mixture of baking soda (which is known to have whitening effects on teeth) and strawberries did not whiten teeth. Even worse, the citric acids found in all of these fruits and vinegars can actually be harmful to the enamel on your teeth.

Fad 3: Hydrogen Peroxide

While it is true that many forms of in-office and over-the-counter teeth whitening make use of hydrogen peroxide, there is more to consider before opening a bottle. The hydrogen peroxide used in professional teeth whitening, whether in-office or at-home, is mixed with other substances and provided in a form designed for use in teeth whitening.

Simply swishing from a bottle of hydrogen peroxide will have little or no effect on the whiteness of your teeth, but may cause irritation to your gums and mouth and can be dangerous if accidentally ingested.

If you want whiter, brighter teeth, there are safe and effective ways to achieve your goal. Talk with our doctor for a recommendation for what kind of whitening will be best for your needs. For more information about whitening, contact our office.

Glen Park Family Dentistry
Phone: (410) 761-1100
633 Greenway Rd. SE
Glen Burnie, MD 21061

“My passion is in making people feel at home when they come to my office. Sure, you may have had bad experiences in the past, or you might be worried about something that’s going on right now, but we are here to help you. Let’s talk about any concerns you might have, use the latest and greatest in technology to diagnose and explain, and then let’s make a plan that fits your goals.

I’m not here just to fix a cavity or pull that achy tooth - I’m here to make your oral health a part of your overall health, and make sure you are smiling your best smile and living your best life.”

- Dr. Christopher Sanginiti

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Monday:8:00 am – 4:00 pm
Tuesday:8:00 am – 4:00 pm
Wednesday:10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Thursday:8:00 am – 3:00 pm
Friday:8:00 am – 1:00 pm
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