Those who love to smile want to show off the most healthy, beautiful set of teeth possible. You may find white teeth the peak of dental beauty. Well then the question remains: How can I whiten my teeth? And best if you can do it in a way that keeps those teeth healthy. 

This article covers:

  • Natural approaches to whitening teeth
  • How to prevent discoloration of teeth
  • Professional methods to whitening teeth

Naturally Whiten Your Teeth at Home

Trying these natural remedies first is best for those who wish to avoid the chemicals used in teeth whitening products. These methods will also save you some money, which you can never say no to.

Oil Pulling

Bacteria can turn into plaque, making your teeth appear yellow. Remove bacteria by swishing oil in your mouth. Any oil will work, but the traditional choices are sunflower or sesame oil. Coconut oil is a popular choice because of its taste and added benefit of reducing inflammation. Using a tablespoon of coconut oil is safe to use daily, but once finished with swishing for 15 to 20 minutes, make sure to spit it out in the trash or toilet, as the oil can return to solid form and cause a clog in your drain.

Baking Soda

Baking soda has natural whitening properties that will not have an immediate effect. Use toothpastes with higher concentrations of baking soda, or make your own toothpaste by combining one teaspoon of baking soda with two teaspoons of water. Use a few times per week.

Box of baking soda, with glass bowl filled with baking soda
Higher amounts of baking soda in store-bought toothpaste will have better teeth-whitening properties. Or make your own baking soda toothpaste! 

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen Peroxide kills bacteria and is a natural bleaching agent. You can dilute it with an equal amount of water to use as a mouthwash. You can also use two teaspoons of hydrogen peroxide and combine it with one teaspoon of baking soda to make toothpaste. Limit this method to only a few times a week, as it can erode your tooth enamel.

Apple Cider Vinegar 

Apple cider vinegar is well known as a disinfectant and natural cleaning product. You can dilute it in water and swish it in your mouth for several minutes. Rinse with plain water afterwards. The main active ingredient in apple cider vinegar is acetic acid, which is effective at killing bacteria. However apple cider vinegar should not be used every day, and should be limited on how long it is in contact with your teeth, as acetic acid can erode the enamel of your teeth. 

Fruits and Vegetables

Crunchy, raw fruit can actually rub away plaque, leaving you with a whiter smile. In particular, try eating more strawberries and pineapple. 


Yellow or discolored teeth have a multitude of causes. Your teeth can be stained by the types of food and drink you consume, such as coffee and soda. A lack of brushing teeth and flossing can lead to a buildup of bacteria and plaque that can make your teeth appear yellow. Discoloration may also come naturally with age. 

Coffee and bread on a ceramic plate
Skip the coffee if you want to prevent discoloration. 

You can prevent the discoloration of your teeth by avoiding certain foods, and staying regular with your brushing and flossing habits. Regular dental cleanings are also beneficial for prevention. You can also limit sugar in your diet and give yourself plenty of calcium. 

Professionally Whiten Your Teeth

Asking your dentist for tooth-whitening treatment is a popular request. Your dentist can do an in-office treatment, or you can find professional products in store to use at home.


The in-office treatment only whitens the front eight teeth, but the treatment has impressive results. Your teeth can end up being ten shades whiter. To carry out the treatment, your dentist will apply strong agents to the teeth. Special precaution is used to protect the surrounding gums and the rest of your mouth. Ask your dentist about this treatment if you think it’s right for you.

Woman lying down with dentist doing work inside her mouth
Hop into the dentist chair and get the in-office treatment that’s going to have incredible results!

Products to Take Home

There are many products to find in store that function to whiten your teeth. Products include whitening mouthwash, whitening toothpaste, whitening strips, paint-on tooth gel, mouth trays with gel and whitening gum. These products are considered safe to use at home, but it is suggested that you confer with your dentist before using these products. They can have the risk of worsening teeth sensitivity. 

There are many smiles out there in the world -- of every shape, size, and hue -- and every one of them beautiful. Whitening teeth can build confidence, but don’t concern yourself too much with how white your smile is. The health of your teeth should always be the priority.