This is not the kind of article that will immediately grab your attention. I mean, it is about gums and teeth so who cares right? Right. So you can just skip this section you've got nothing to lose - but your teeth.
A brush up on brushing
Are you doing it right?
Let us start from the basics. What is plaque? It is a sticky film of bacteria that keeps forming inside your mouth. Though this bacteria is not harmful in itself, if it is allowed to remain on the surface of your teeth for more than 24 hours, it organizes into colonies and starts producing harmful enzymes.
So the key to keeping teeth and gums healthy is plaque removal. As long as plaque gets removed every 24 hours, the build up process never gets started. The best way to remove plaque is, of course, brushing teeth regularly. How often is enough? If anyone tells you that you should brush teeth after every meal, you can just let it in one ear and out the other. The worst thing you can do to teeth is brush them more than twice a day. Excessive brushing erodes your teeth, causing a breakdown of the entire periodontal structure and is a sure-fire path to a mouthful of crowns by your 40th birthday. So if you feel your teeth are extra sensitive, for example if they tingle too much when you are sipping cold water, it's time you sat up and paid attention.
Use a soft toothbrush and change it often. An old toothbrush may succeed in getting the gunk off your teeth, but if the bristles are rough - which they will be before long, you will be causing more damage than good.
Brushing-are you doing it right?
Just because your grandparents teeth slept in a katori besides them, does not mean losing teeth is just a matter of time. If you look after them, you can still be buried at the ripe old age of 110 with teeth intact. It has been known to happen. But you have to first figure out if you are brushing your teeth right. Surprisingly, almost 75 percent of the population are doing it all wrong! The best way to brush teeth is to place the brush at a 45 degree angle and use short downward strokes. Gently does it. Use about ten strokes per section and keep brushing for at least 4-5 minutes. Don't forget your tongue. Not only does that unsightly white coating look gross, but the tongue has bacteria catching grooves as well.
If your gums bleed while brushing, either you are getting something wrong, or you have a problem. Try being gentler on gums and give it a few days. If bleeding persists while brushing, it is time to give your dentist a call.
How do you know if your teeth are clean? After brushing, scrape your nail over the surface of your teeth. If it comes out clean, you're fine. If a white film comes out, you have not done a thorough job.
Tear off about 10 to 12 cm of dental floss and wrap it around your middle or forefinger of each hand. Gently work it back and forth between two teeth till it slides past the tight spot. Be careful not to be too rough or your may slice your gum. Next, wrap the floss around your tooth and scrape it up and down. This removes stubborn plaque and polishes the surface. Repeat the process on each tooth till they are well and truly flossed. Rinse your mouth. You could brush your teeth before or after flossing, it does not matter. Some people prefer flossing first and then brushing the loose ends away.
Finally, make it a point to visit your dentist at least once in six months and get your teeth cleaned professionally to keep the tartar (plaque build-up) from accumulating.
Diet is of prime importance and yes, sugar is the bad guy. Didn't want to hear that, did you? Sorry, there's no getting away from it. Sugar attaches plaque to teeth so if you must indulge, wash your mouth afterwards. What you should include in your diet though is plenty of calcium, Vitamin B and C and proteins.
Besides a healthy diet, eat foods that require enough chewing. Teeth need exercise too! More importantly, chewing generates saliva, which restores calcium lost due to plaque.
When teeth become yellowish, rub with hydrogen peroxide (20 Vol.) using 1 part to 7 parts of water.
To stop tooth decay and any mouth diseases, the most economical thing to use is dry neem-leaf powder sprinkled on a little tooth paste on your brush.
Brushing teeth with soda-bicarbonate removes nicotine and other dark stains also. It helps to prevent the formation of tartar and keeps the teeth white.
Massage the gums daily with a mixture of pure mustard oil with a little table salt added to it. This will keep the teeth healthy and cure pyorrhea.
Clean' the teeth and . mouth with an antiseptic mouthwash. also clean teeth and gums thoroughly, floss between teeth and even brush the tongue daily.
For those who have' dentures, clean them daily with a brush and a suitable cleanser. Soak removable ones overnight in a mixture of 1 tablespoon household bleach and 1 teaspoon water softener in half cup water.
3 Natural Ways to Whiten Teeth at Home
1. Baking Soda and Lemon Juice Paste - Sodium bicarbonate (its official name) is mildly abrasive; gently scrubbing away surface stains to return teeth to a whiter shade. It’s also very alkaline (the opposite of acidic) so I would think if you have a very acidic mouth or eat a lot of acidic food, it could help balance out the Ph, which would be useful as acid breaks down enamel.It will also reduce the acidity of the lemon juice, which acts as a natural bleach of sorts. We can use a mixture of baking soda and water on some days, and use the lemon juice on others.
You will need…
-Several teaspoons of baking soda
-Enough lemon juice or water to form a paste
Mix several teaspoons of baking soda with enough fresh lemon juice (or water) to make a paste. Wipe your teeth and any extra saliva off of them with a paper towel. Put a good amount of paste onto your toothbrush and apply. Leave the paste on for 1 minute, then rinse, so as to avoid the acid effecting enamel. If you are using just water you can leave it on for up to 3 minutes.
2. Strawberry, Salt and Baking Soda Scrub -
Strawberries are high in Vitamin C, which can help break-down plaque that is causing your teeth to look yellow. It also has an enzyme called malic acid, which may help to remove surface stains. The salt acts as an abrasive portion of the paste, physically scrubbing away stain-causing gunk, and the baking soda is an extra touch that you can choose to leave out if you’d prefer.
You will need…
-1-3 large strawberries
-A pinch of seat salt
-1/2 teaspoon of baking soda (optional)
Mash the berries into a pulp, and add a pinch of sea salt and ˝ teaspoon of baking soda, if you’re using it. Wipe any extra saliva off your teeth with a paper towel, and then apply a generous portion of the mixture to a toothbrush and apply. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes, then rinse. Do this nightly.
3. Coconut Oil Rinse -
Lauric acid in coconut oil can rid your teeth of bacteria found in plaque that can make them yellow. It is also supposed to promote gum health, and help keep your breath fresh.
You will need…
-About a tablespoon of coconut oil
In the morning, before you brush your teeth, scoop out a tablespoon or a little less (depending on the size of your mouth) of coconut oil. You can either soften it, or just put it in your mouth . Push, swish, and “pull” the oil through and around your teeth for 10-15 minutes, then spit it out, rinse with water, and brush your teeth.
- Routine. Set up a routine using these remedies and stick to it, at all costs, to get the most out of them.
- While not “natural” per say, using 3% (I repeat, 3%) hydrogen peroxide as a mouth rinse can whiten your teeth through the process of oxidation. It is an active indigent in many OTC whitening kits, but is often times found in much higher (and expensive) combinations in them.
- It’s fairly common knowledge, and difficult in today’s world, but try to avoid dark drinks, such as coke and coffee that stain your teeth.