Lose the Chemicals: Top 5 Tips for Naturally Whiter Teeth
One of the most valuable and informative podcast episodes I have heard is called Successful Self-Dentistry. It is hosted by Daniel Vitalis on his show ReWild Yourself. I found it over a year ago and my life changed a little after hearing it.
I had been trending towards more natural oral hygiene and dental care for some time by then, but the information in that podcast was still eye opening for me. I believed that my teeth were sensitive and the only way to keep them from hurting was to use prescription fluoride toothpaste. I believed that the only way to keep my teeth white was to bleach them every now and then with store-bought whitening strips. I believed that bad breath was a symptom of not brushing or flossing enough.
First Venture Into Alternative Oral Care
Hearing Nadine Artemis, the guest on the podcast and creator of Living Libations, describe the ecosystem that is the mouth in precise and informative, yet easily digestible terms flipped my oral hygiene world upside down. I bought my first “dirt” tooth cleaning powder, bought some key essential oils, a few other ingredients, and jars for mixing my own dental care products. The research chemist in me loved the project! While blending powders and oils in my bathroom wasn’t quite the same as researching and running complicated organic reactions in a chemistry lab, it was the best I had and I welcomed the opportunity.
Getting Results With "dirt"
The results have been amazing. Aside from the fact that I now spend less money on dental care, the actual benefit is that my mouth is healthy! My teeth are now whiter than even with bleach, the sensitivity is maybe only 10-15% of what it used to be, and bad breath is a thing of the past.
The caveat is that natural dentistry is not the only change I made to manifest better oral health. As a certified Functional Diagnostic Nutrition ® Practitioner, I prioritize the overall health of my body which contributes to a healthy mouth. Just as I do with my clients, I run functional lab tests on myself to uncover hidden stressors in places such as gastrointestinal tract, hormones, immune system, and more. I use healing protocols to heal and correct imbalances. I use a variety of stress reduction techniques ranging from meditation and sweating to pathogen eradication protocols using supplements. I pay very close attention to the food I eat and the water I drink. I move my body with intention and purpose and take care to let my muscles recover.
5 Actions to Take NOW
If you are ready to start your journey to better oral health, I will share my top 5 tips to get you going, including a recipe for tooth cleaning powder.
1. Ditch the fluoride! Contrary to conventional wisdom, it is NOT necessary for the health of your teeth and is actually TOXIC. Do you know why drinking water in the US contains fluoride? Because back in the 1940's and 50's the industry generated excess fluoride as a waste byproduct and simply had no better way of disposing of it. That’s it! They had nowhere else to put it! Water fluoridation was, as Dr. Mercola puts it, A Case of Successful Social Engineering. Bottom line - stop using fluoridated toothpastes and filter the fluoride out of your water.
2. Ditch your mouthwash! Use oil pulling instead. Oil pulling is an ancient Chinese technique used to detoxify your mouth. Coconut oil works very well for this, especially if blended with a few drops of essential oils of maleluca (tea tree), peppermint, and/or oregano. Pop a tablespoon of it into your mouth first thing in the morning and swish for 5-15 minutes. Take care not to swallow the oil as it will contain all the toxins it pulls out of your mouth. Spit it out and then brush your teeth.
3. Floss every day. It’s no secret that flossing can help with oral health and prevention of cavities. Cup each tooth and gently massage the gums. Take care not to cut your gums with the floss.
4. Scrape your tongue. Aside from the obvious benefit of better smelling breath, tongue scraping can help improve immunity since the tongue is the first line of defense in your immune system, can improve you sense of taste by clearing toxins that might be blocking your taste buds, and improving your digestion by activating better saliva production.
5. Ditch your conventional toothpaste! Chances are it contains fluoride, bleach, and a number of other chemicals that are disturbing the ecosystem of your mouth. Here is a recipe for a “WHITENING DIRTY TOOTH POWDER” you can make at home with simple and relatively inexpensive ingredients. It will require an initial investment, but will last a very long time and polish up your pearly whites like nothing else.
Combine all ingredients in a glass jar. Mix well. Bam, done! This recipe makes a TON! If you want to try a smaller batch, make ¼ of this recipe to start with. The essential oils in this blend are so incredibly antiseptic that you can simply dip your toothbrush right into the powder and not worry about contamination. Feel free to experiment with other flavors!
Most of us are used to brushing with a paste that squeezes out of a tube so dipping a toothbrush into a jar of powder may take some getting used it. The paste is nothing but convention. There is no reason it HAS TO BE paste. Admittedly, brushing with “dirt” powder is messy. For this reason, I keep a cloth by my sink and simply wipe the “dirt” when I’m done brushing. There are many compromises people make that result in worsening of their health. This is one compromise (among many others!) I am willing to make to *improve* my health.
If you’d like to learn more about how dental health is connected to your overall health, click here to get in touch with us!