As we get older, our teeth get darker. Part of the darkening is due to stains caused by drinks and food, such as coffee, wine and sodas. Smoking is another cause of staining. You can remove minor food and cigarette stains from your teeth using home teeth whitening methods. In many cases, two weeks of home treatment is all that you need to get a whiter and more youthful smile, but major staining on the teeth will require treatment from a dentist.
Home Bleaching Kit
Home bleaching kits for teeth are available in the oral hygiene section of your local grocery store or drug store. Look for a product that contains the seal of the American Dental Association, which means the ADA has approved it as a safe oral hygiene product.
The kits contain disposable strips that you wear on your teeth for 30 minutes a day. Most home whitening kits contain enough strips for 14 days of treatment. Expect your teeth to whiten anywhere between one and three shades after 14 days worth of treatment.
Strawberries and Baking Soda
You can whiten your teeth using strawberries and baking soda, according to the book "Dental Secrets," by Dr. Stephen T. Sonis. Strawberries contain malic acid, which removes minor surface stains. Baking soda acts as an abrasive to scrub away stains. To whiten your teeth, mash one strawberry in a bowl. Dip your toothbrush in the mashed strawberry mixture and brush your teeth with it. Rinse your toothbrush and mouth with water. Then dip your toothbrush in baking soda and brush your teeth again. Rinse your toothbrush and mouth with water once again. Repeat this routine once a day for two weeks.
Rubbing the inside of an orange peel on your teeth before your normal brushing routine will gradually whiten your teeth, according to DocShop.com. The orange peel contains citric acids that dissolve minor surface stains, with repeated use. Always brush your teeth after using the orange peel to remove the acids from the surface of your teeth. If allowed to remain for an extended length of time, the acid could damage your tooth enamel.
CareFair.com suggests eating crunchy fruits and vegetables to manually remove surface stains. While you chew, the fibrous crunchy fruits and vegetables rub against your teeth and scrape off plaque and food debris. To benefit your front teeth, bite into whole pieces of fruits and vegetables, such as apples or carrots.
H.C. Hisel has worked for the past nine years as a professional writer, dancer, musician, painter and photographer. Hisel had her own weekly newspaper column in the Banana 411, a newspaper for kids. Her articles have been published in various print markets and online, including Trails.com and Golflink.com.