As we age our teeth yellow, it is not uncommon to whiten your teeth. However, understanding all of why our teeth whiten may help. Not only do certain foods cause stains but so can certain habits. Food that are thought to cause staining include tea, coffee, dark berries and red wine. Habits like chewing tobacco and smoking can also stain teeth. Further, aging also yellows your teeth by the thinning of your enamel.
So some of the best things you can do help whiten your teeth is adopt healthier habits. There is no replacement for good dental hygiene. So make sure to brush your teeth regularly as well as to floss and use mouthwash to keep bacteria down. A diet heavy in healthy unprocessed fruits and vegetables is also helpful.
Beyond that, activated charcoal seems to work for many though there is little scientific evidence to back it up. The charcoal should be in a fine powder, you dip a clean damp toothbrush into it and scrub your teeth with it 2-3 times per week. Be very careful as the charcoal can stain everything. Make sure you are only going to be near surfaces that you cannot stain. Also, do not use this if you have porcelain veneers, caps, or crowns.
Another method that actually HAS been proven to reduce bacteria in the mouth is oil pulling. This you can do every day. Sesame oil is traditional and research shows that swishing the oil in your mouth for 15-20 minutes a day cuts down the bacteria in the mouth. This helps prevent further yellowing and improves overall dental health.
You can also brush with baking soda 2-3 times per week. It is a common ingredient found in many toothpastes. It is so popular because it works. Things we do not recommend as being fully safe include: hydrogen peroxide, bleaching gels, apple cider vinegar, and lemons.