Turmeric: You hear about it in every health article out there these days. The orange-colored root has been used in traditional Indian cooking for centuries and is now being recognized for it’s powerful healing qualities, including its ability to fight inflammation and aid in warding off certain diseases. And now, we’ve got a totally new use for the spice that may seem otherwise unlikely: whitening your teeth.
Oral health is complicated, and while we all know that bright, sparkly pearly-white teeth are essential for a flawless face, commercial teeth whiteners pose other dangers to your oral health and can increase the likelihood of developing issues like gum disease, gingivitis, enamel and tooth decay, and even receding gums — yuck!
Luckily for us, turmeric is an all-natural alternative to pesky chemicals that can instead benefit your oral health in more ways than one. That’s right: Not only will turmeric make your teeth whiter, but it can actually help you ward off gum disease and reduce any inflammation of the gums and mouth. Some studies suggest that this could be because of the main active ingredient in turmeric — curcumin — which has anti-inflammatory properties that protect against gum disease and gingivitis, all while reducing the build up of plaque and bacteria on the teeth and along the gum line. Other studies suggest that it may even be a great all-natural solution to the mouth pain associated with conditions like periodontitis and oral cancers.
So while it may seem counterproductive to rub a bright orange powder onto your teeth to make them whiter, we’re urging you to try out turmeric for teeth whitening, because trust us, it works! Not only will you be showing off shiny pearly whites, but your teeth and mouth health will be boosted overall. Here’s how to use turmeric for teeth whitening.
Turmeric for Teeth Whitening: Recipe and Process
To use turmeric to whiten your teeth safely, you’ll need to make sure not to over-do it. The process outlined below can be used over the course of a few days, and you shouldn’t repeat it more than once per day as this could cause damage to your enamel.
There are a few ways to include turmeric in your oral care routine. The first is to make your own whitening treatment using turmeric powder. Keep in mind, turmeric is a spice that is quite potent in taste, so if you’re not a fan of having that taste in your mouth, you can try adding some mint oil to your turmeric powder. Another note: turmeric stains. Be careful with your clothes, and bear in mind that you should use a fresh toothbrush to apply it, as it will turn bristles yellow.
To make your own turmeric teeth whitening mixture, simply dish out a small amount, about ¼ teaspoon of turmeric powder, and add your mint oil, if desired. That’s all you need! Brush your teeth as usual with regular toothpaste, then using a wet toothbrush, lightly dip it into the powder/mixture. Apply the wet turmeric powder to your teeth and gums. Allow the turmeric powder to sit on your teeth for five to ten minutes, then rinse thoroughly with warm water. Next, brush your teeth again with toothpaste, and you’re done!
If this doesn’t sound so appealing, you can also use commercially-made products for teeth whitening containing turmeric in them. There are loads of different products you can try, like toothpastes infused with turmeric or turmeric teeth whitening powders made with other ingredients. Try this turmeric toothpaste from Neutripure ($10.00, Amazon), or this turmeric and charcoal teeth-whitening powder from Dermomama ($8.90, Amazon). Happy whitening!
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This article originally appeared on our sister site, Woman’s World.
This article was updated on September 23, 2022.