Whether you’re waiting out a disaster or just going back to the land, commercial toothpaste and expensive dental procedures may not be practical. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have a healthy, pain-free smile. Here are a few ways to clean your teeth naturally.
Strawberries and baking soda
This quick recipe is great for cleaning and whitening your teeth, especially if they are stained from coffee, nicotine wine or soda. Strawberries contain malic acid, which is a natural acid that scrubs away surface discoloration. These are ingredients commonly found in commercial toothpaste. As with any acid, though, it can damage your enamel if used too often. “Your enamel can’t be regrown. Once it’s gone, it’s gone,” says Dr. Brahm, a cosmetic dentist from Glastonbury, CT. So, don’t go overboard. Once a week is more than enough.
Mash the strawberry into pulp and mix with a little baking soda until blended. Then spread the paste onto your teeth and leave there for a few minutes. Then brush normally to remove the residue. This is an important step because strawberries contain sugar. If you don’t remove all the residue from your teeth, you could be setting yourself up for cavities.
You can achieve similar results by brushing with lemon juice and salt. The lemon contains citric acid and the salt acts as a scrubbing agent. Some people prefer the salty taste to sweeter artificially flavored toothpastes. Don’t forget to brush again afterward with regular water to remove the acid.
Another common toothpaste ingredient is peroxide. It bleaches hair, and yes, it bleaches teeth, too. You’re bound to have this useful item on hand anyway to clean cuts and scrapes. Now you can use it to clean your teeth as well. Just rinse with a little of the liquid to kill harmful bacteria. (Be aware, it’s not going to taste very good.)
Keeping your teeth clean is so important when regular visits to a modern dentist isn’t possible. Brush twice a day and rinse your mouth anytime you’ve eaten sugar or acidic foods. No one wants to be faced with dental pain during an emergency survival situation. So, give these simple recipes a try. Not only will they whiten your smile, they’ll also keep tooth decay at a minimum by destroying harmful bacteria.