Is Baking Soda Bad for Your Teeth?
Not really. It is definitely cheaper than some teeth whitening products, but not recommended for daily use. Safety tips will be explained later. Some of the benefits of using baking soda to brush your teeth are given below.
1. Fight Bad Breath
Having bad breath is very embarrassing and it is usually caused by residual acid forming foods. Baking soda helps in balancing the acid level, while treating and preventing bad breath. To use, in one glass of water, dissolve half teaspoon of baking soda and use as a mouth rinse.
2. Prevent Gum Disease
Gum disease is also known as gingivitis, causing swelling, bleeding and soreness of gums. They also get infected and lead to bad breath. Accumulated plaque can cause gum diseases which do not happen when baking soda is used.
3. Soothe Mouth Ulcers
Ulcers are painful and can irritate. The healing process is usually long because we eat and drink, which further irritate the ulcer. Baking soda can accelerate the healing process while soothing it. It should be mixed with water and used as a mouth rinse.
4. Whiten Teeth
Teeth can get stained by foods, drinks, alcohol and nicotine use. Baking soda removes stains from teeth; hence it is an ingredient in tooth pastes and whitening agents. Dip a damp toothbrush in baking soda and brush teeth may help you whiten your teeth.
Tips to Safely Brush Teeth with Baking Soda
If the question, “is baking soda bad for your teeth”, is still on your mind, read the following tips to use baking soda safely.
- Toothbrush should be wet by water or mouth rinse before you brush your teeth with baking soda. Mouth rinse usually can help to mask the taste of baking soda.
- Brush the biting surface of teeth initially for around 15 seconds so that the baking soda mixes with saliva and becomes creamy. This will also ensure that the gums do not get irritated. Remember not to brush your teeth for more than 2 minutes.
- Regular tooth paste contains fluoride which keeps the teeth healthy. Hence, baking soda should not replace the paste. You can brush with paste after you have brushed with baking soda.
- You should discontinue the use of baking soda for brushing if you have bleeding gums. It should also not be used if you have braces with orthodontic glue or are using a permanent retainer. It is always good to consult a dentist before using.
- Use small quantities of baking soda in a separate container, as it can clump up when used every day. You can replace it with fresh baking soda every few weeks.
Potential Risks of Brushing Teeth with Baking Soda
Although the answer to the question “is baking soda bad for your teeth” is no, there are some risks that call for your attention.
1. Incapable of Preventing Cavity
The teeth do not remain healthy if you use only baking soda to brush your teeth, according to American Dental Association (ADA). Toothpaste is an abrasive agent which is responsible for removing debris and stains from the tooth surface and can’t be totally replaced. Baking soda is ineffective against plaque which is mainly responsible for tooth decay. By using it for long, it can damage the enamel, thus making teeth sensitive and prone to cavities.
2. Soften Dental Glue
Dental glue is used in braces and permanent retainers. Baking soda can cause damage to the dental glue and hence should not be used by people with braces.
3. Other Risks
If baking soda is not applied properly, it can cause damage to the teeth and gums. There is no standard procedure to apply baking soda for teeth whitening.
Article adapted from New Health Advisor