Most forms of tooth discoloration are not dangerous, but these stains can result in an unsightly smile. While professional whitening services are quite effective, many people are interested in finding natural ways to brighten their teeth. Here is a closer look at four whitening options that are both safe and effective.

Hydrogen Peroxide Mouthwash

Hydrogen peroxide can be used to treat many different cosmetic blemishes, and that includes external tooth stains. Not only does this substance have antibacterial properties, but it also penetrates deep into the teeth to lift stubborn stains. Mixing a cup of clean water with a cup of hydrogen peroxide is a simple, safe, and affordable way to brighten a smile. You should swish the mixture around your mouth for one full minute before spitting it out. It’s always a good idea to use extra water when washing out your mouth after using hydrogen peroxide.

Baking Soda Paste

Practically everyone has a box of baking soda somewhere in their home, but very few people realize that this popular product can also be used to naturally brighten a smile. Professionals, like those at Treasured Smiles Dentistry, realize that a simple whitening paste can be made by mixing a few teaspoons of hydrogen peroxide with a few teaspoons of baking soda. Baking soda is a very abrasive substance, so you should only apply it to your teeth with a soft-bristled toothbrush a few times a month. After all, no one wants to have leftover gritty junk in their mouth once the process if over and complete.  That’s just no fun at all.

Activated Charcoal

Not to be confused with the charcoal that is used to cook food, activated charcoal is a natural supplement that can be taken to detoxify one’s body. In its powdered form, it can also be used to remove deep stains. After brushing with traditional toothpaste, you should apply a mixture of charcoal and water to your teeth and let it sit for five or ten minutes. As the charcoal is rinsed away, it will remove some of the microbes that were clinging to your teeth. It might look funky when applying it to the teeth, but it sure cleans up well.  It works better than bleach trays ever could, and of course, you don’t have to put bleach in your mouth, which is just a horrible idea.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a natural antibiotic that will lift the stains that have been caused by coffee, tea, and other beverages. ACV contains a gentle compound known as acetic acid, and this type of acid breaks apart the tannins that cause teeth to look brown or yellow. After brushing with ACV, you should thoroughly rinse your mouth out to remove any lingering debris. Apple cider vinegar works best when it is used at least once a month.

After trying these natural whitening treatments, those who are still not seeing results should schedule an appointment with a dentist. Internal discoloration is much more difficult to treat, and it generally requires comprehensive treatments such as caps or veneers.