5 Ways To Get Rid of Coffee Stains On Your Teeth at Home
Stained, yellowed teeth can be a real bummer for your confidence, especially if you spend a lot of time in front of new people. It’s been reported that as many as 18% of people hide their teeth in photos, because they don’t want others, or themselves to see how stained they are.
Red wine, tea and coffee are a few of the most common reasons people end up dulling the natural whiteness of their teeth, and adding milk doesn’t fully solve the problem (especially not if you put milk in your wine). Additionally, just brushing and flossing (important as they could be) likely won’t be enough to keep your teeth perfectly white.
At Groom+Style, we know a few tricks for keeping teeth healthy and white, and while there’s no quick fix, if you stick to any of these bits of advice, you should see a marked improvement in just a few weeks.
1. Baking Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide
You might be thinking of hydrogen peroxide in relation to hair bleaching, and be wondering why anyone would spread a mixture like that over their teeth, but don’t worry. The concentration of hydrogen peroxide used to bleach hair is much higher than the kind you’ll make at home to help remove the coffee stains on your teeth.
How Does Hydrogen Peroxide Work to Remove Stains on Teeth?
Hydrogen peroxide is an oxidizer, which means it stimulates the surface of the enamel on your teeth, to give up the particles causing the discoloration. The baking soda increases the reaction, causes a fizzing effect which gets the particles moving even more, lifting the stains from your teeth. You can see the effect straight away, when you mix baking soda with a hydrogen peroxide solution, it will gently fizz and make a few small bubbles.
How to Use Baking Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide Solution
Beginning with a few drops of hydrogen peroxide solution, add enough baking soda to make a runny paste, which isn’t abrasive, and which spreads easily over your teeth. You can also brush it on gently. Once applied, leave in place for 15-20 minutes, then rinse and brush your teeth with a regular toothpaste. You’ll need to repeat this process daily for about 2-3 weeks until you start to notice a considerable difference in the whiteness of your teeth.
2. Coconut Oil Pulling
This one might be news to a lot of people, but it’s a pretty old practice. Coconut oil is a known antibacterial agent, and in addition to that, it may also help to whiten teeth.
Bacteria which build up after you eat and drink, can degrade the surface of your teeth and make them appear dull and discolored. Coconut oil helps to kill those bacteria and neutralize excess acid inside your mouth — something else which can make teeth appear yellow or dull.
How Does Coconut Oil Pulling Work?
By dragging oil through and around the teeth over the course of 20 minutes, the coconut oil flushes out and neutralizes excess bacteria, which can cause teeth to appear yellow or dull.
How to Use Coconut Oil Pulling to Whiten Teeth?
This takes some getting used to, and you may not be able to stomach the full 20 minutes at first, but stick with it, and eventually it gets easier. Start with a teaspoon of organic virgin coconut oil and let it melt in your mouth. Now, start to swish the oil around in your mouth, coating each of your teeth. Like we said, it takes some getting used to.
Next, pull the oil between your teeth, from front to back. Repeat this process for around 20 minutes, then rinse, and brush your teeth as normal. Keep it up as a daily routine, and you’ll not only do away with stains, but also bad breath and the potential for tooth decay.
3. Teeth Whitening Kits
If you’d prefer to go the teeth whitening kit route, there are plenty of options for you. Most are based on a hydrogen peroxide solution, whether you get strips or a liquid pack. There are instructions in each telling you how to use them, and you should follow them carefully, since ‘professional’ kits are often much stronger than the solutions you might make at home. That doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll make your teeth whiter faster, but it does mean there could be problems if you don’t use them correctly — we’re talking about damage to tooth enamel and gums, mostly.
Remember: Tooth enamel does not grow back, so be careful.
These kits are intended to be used when you’ve got some time to dedicate to them. They come with two guides, one for the upper set of teeth and one for the lower set. Using the supplied syringes, you’ll apply the hydrogen peroxide solution to the guard and place it over your teeth. Then, leave it in place for as long as the directions indicate, before rinsing and brushing as normal.
Teeth Whitening Strips
Some teeth whitening strips take as long to show results as regular teeth whitening kits, while others claim to show results in as little as an hour. Be careful when using strips like this, as while they might offer decent results, prolonged use can damage your teeth and gums.
Just like the kits, strips work by applying a solution to your teeth, only the solution used in strips is often stronger, which is why we suggest exercising caution.
Groom+Style have written a complete comparison of the Top 5 Best At Home Teeth Whitening Kits – so check it out!
Activated Charcoal for Teeth Whitening
Charcoal for teeth whitening? Seems counterintuitive but it works, and is much less damaging to teeth over the long-term than hydrogen peroxide can be (if used improperly).
Some activated charcoal kits are mixed with herbal oils or powders to make them taste better, herbs such as sage, which has breath-freshening and antibacterial properties.
Using activated charcoal for teeth whitening is easy, too; simply brush the mixture on, let it sit, then rinse and brush as normal.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar
Again, use caution when applying anything acidic to your teeth over long periods. It’s unnatural to apply stuff to your teeth to whiten them, and the best way to avoid discolored teeth is to avoid the causes. But, we do it anyway, and if you are going to use cider vinegar, which has been shown to have a whitening effect if used over time, then doing so is pretty simple.
Just like coconut oil pulling, all you’ll need to do is to put a spoonful of apple cider vinegar in your mouth and swish it around. Keep doing it for 10 minutes, then rinse and brush as normal. Make sure you brush with toothpaste right after, since excess acid is bad for teeth.
5. Mashed Strawberries
Here’s one we’re not so sure of, but which seems to be pretty popular online. After hearing about how Tyra Banks and Catherine Zeta-Jones used mashed up strawberries as a way to whiten teeth, plenty of people have been trying it themselves. Placebo or not, it’s definitely the tastiest option on our list.
Conclusion – Coffee Stains and Teeth Whitening
Your teeth should stay naturally white if you brush regularly and avoid excess tea, coffee and red wine. If you do choose to use a whitener — homemade or store-bought — follow any instructions carefully, never leave solutions on for longer than necessary, and if you notice any pain or thinning of the enamel on your teeth, stop and see a dentist for a professional cleaning*.
*Bonus tip: A dentist can clean your teeth using light treatment or a peroxide solution. It will cost more, and long-term effects may be the same, but you will be guided by a professional.