Alternatives to Tooth Whitening

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The simplest alternative to a treatment to whiten your teeth is to alter your habits and lifestyle to reduce staining. Reducing the consumption of any food or activity that might stain your teeth, such as smoking cigarettes or drinking coffee, is one easy step to reduce staining or preserving the effects of a whitening treatment. Another easy way to can help to prevent and reduce topical staining is to make regular trips to your dentist, as well as carefully maintaining dental hygiene, including thorough brushing, flossing and use of a mouth wash.


One way to treat staining is occasional use of high strength de-scaling toothpaste. The recommended use of these toothpastes is around once a month, although you always ought to check the instructions and health and safety advice to ensure you are following the guidelines. You could also choose to use a toothpaste with whitening properties. The whitening effect produced by these tooth pastes are usually caused by a very mild abrasive substance which gently buffs away topical staining.

Leading brands

Colgate, Sensodyne and Arm & Hammer are all well known and trusted toothpaste companies, and they all have several types of whitening tooth pastes available and switching to one of these from your regular tooth paste is very simple. You can now even purchase tooth whitening toothpaste which is suitable for sensitive teeth and gums. They cost roughly the same as one another and their regular tooth paste counterparts.

How do toothpastes whiten the teeth?

Most of these pastes use either bicarbonate of soda or an artificial micro-abrasion system which can deal with some topical staining, but some doctors believe calling this type of product ‘whitening’ is a little misleading. None of the high street tooth pastes actually lighten the colour of your teeth in the way a specific tooth whitening treatment will, and instead only help to reduce topical staining.

Using a whitening tooth paste

If you choose to switch to a whitening treatment it may have a beneficial effect on the colour of your teeth, and this can be especially effective in prolonging the effects of a tooth whitening treatment. The effects are difficult to quantify, however, and the best approach is to sample each of the high street brands and find which one suits your teeth best. No toothpaste , however, will dramtically improve the colour of your teeth alone.

Bicarbonate of soda

A home remedy is to create a thick paste with a little bicarbonate of soda or baking powder and water. Once a smooth and thick consistency is reached you then apply it to your teeth and rub, wither with a finger or tooth brush. The slight abrasive power of this solution should buff away topical staining, and has anecdotal reports of mild success. It is a very gentle solution, however, and unlikely to have dramatic results.

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