How to Whiten Teeth With Baking Soda

Having white teeth can be a major confidence boost. Fortunately, you may not need to spend lots of money on whitening kits or professional treatments. Brushing or rinsing with baking soda could help whiten your teeth, but be aware you should use it carefully. To prevent dental erosion, brush with baking soda in moderation and avoid using too much force. Bear in mind discoloration may point to dental issues, so try to see a dentist if you haven’t had a checkup in a while.

EditSteps
EditBrushing with a Baking Soda Paste
Mix together roughly equal parts of baking soda and water. In a small cup, mix ½ teaspoon (3 g) of baking soda with enough water to form a paste, or ¼ to ½ teaspoon (1 ¼ to 2 ½ mL). A paste of 1 to 2 parts of baking soda mixed with 1 part of water is easier to apply and more effective than baking soda alone.[1]
Avoid making a paste with baking soda and lemon, strawberry, or any other fruit juice. Fruit juices are acidic and could erode your teeth’s enamel, especially when combined with baking soda or other abrasive products.[2]

Brush your teeth with the baking soda paste for 1 to 2 minutes. Dip a soft-bristled brush into the paste, and gently scrub your teeth using circular motions. Brush all around instead of scrubbing 1 spot for the entire 2 minutes. Be sure not to brush hard or you might hurt your teeth.[3]Alternatively, use your fingertips to gently rub your teeth with the paste. Rub in soft circles, and don’t use too much force.

If you have receding gums, avoid brushing the base of your teeth and around your gum line with baking soda. The substance that covers your teeth below the gums is softer than enamel and prone to damage.[4]

Rinse out your mouth when you’re finished brushing. After brushing for 2 minutes, spit out the baking soda and rinse your mouth with water or mouthwash. Give your toothbrush a thorough rinse as well.Note that you shouldn’t rinse after brushing with a fluoride toothpaste, as rinsing reduces fluoride’s beneficial effects. For this reason, don’t brush or rinse with baking soda right after brushing with regular toothpaste. If you really need to rinse away visible residue after using regular toothpaste, use as little water as possible.[5]

Repeat every other day for up to 2 weeks. At most, brush your teeth with baking soda paste every other day for 1 to 2 weeks. Then cut back to doing it just once or twice a week. Since it’s abrasive, using baking soda more frequently may damage your teeth.[6]Keep in mind that brushing your teeth with baking soda should not replace brushing your teeth with regular toothpaste. Brushing twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, flossing daily, and regular dental checkups are the best ways to keep your teeth healthy.

Before brushing with baking soda, check with your dentist to see if your teeth are healthy enough for this method. Your teeth may be sensitive to abrasion, and baking soda may cause irreversible dental erosion.

EditTrying Alternative Methods
Mix 2 parts of baking soda with 1 part of 1% to 3% hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide may whiten teeth, but you need to use it with caution. To try this method, mix 2 parts of baking with 1 part of 1% to 3% hydrogen peroxide to form a paste. Brush your teeth with the mixture for 1 to 2 minutes, then rinse with water.[7]Make sure you use hydrogen peroxide with a concentration of 3% or less. Brush with hydrogen peroxide and baking soda once a week at most.

Stop brushing and rinse your mouth with cool water if you feel a burning sensation. Don’t use this method if you have receding or sensitive gums, as hydrogen peroxide can cause irritation and damage exposed roots.[8]

Brush your teeth with a mix of baking soda and fluoride toothpaste. Squeeze your regular toothpaste onto your toothbrush, then sprinkle a pinch of baking soda on top. Brush your teeth as you normally would for 2 minutes with soft, circular motions. Then spit and, if you need to rinse away white residue, swish your mouth with a little water.[9]As with a baking soda and water paste, brush with baking soda and toothpaste in moderation. Try it every other day for 1 to 2 weeks at first, then brush with baking soda once or twice a week at most.

You can also purchase a toothpaste that already contains baking soda. In the United States, look for a product that carries the ADA (American Dental Association) Seal of Acceptance, and use it as directed.[10]
If you have sensitive teeth or dental erosion, avoid using toothpastes that contain baking soda or are branded as whitening products.[11]

Gargle with a baking soda and water rinse. Combine 1 teaspoon (6 g) of baking soda and of water in a glass, then stir the mixture until the baking soda is evenly distributed. Take a sip, gargle for about 30 seconds, then spit out the mixture. Repeat the steps until you’ve finished the entire glass.[12]
The baking soda rinse won’t erode your teeth, so it’s safe to gargle with it daily.

Gargling with a baking soda rinse whitens your teeth indirectly. Baking soda neutralizes acids, so it helps fight dental erosion caused by acidic foods and beverages. It can also help fight bacteria that cause decay and promote good bacteria that create a protective layer on your teeth.[13]

EditTips
Avoid brushing your gums with baking soda or hydrogen peroxide.

Don’t brush a single area of your mouth for too long. Divide 1 to 1 ½ minutes evenly among your top teeth, then brush your bottom teeth for a total of 1 to 1 ½ minutes.

Remember not to brush with a mix baking soda and lemon juice or other acidic substances.

EditWarnings
See a dentist if you’re concerned about whitening your teeth. Stains or discoloration may be signs of problems that require professional dental care.[14]
Don’t brush your teeth with baking soda or abrasive toothpastes if you have sensitive teeth, which may indicate dental erosion. Brushing with abrasive products will just make matters worse.[15]
Avoid brushing with baking soda or hydrogen peroxide if you have braces or a permanent retainer.[16]
To prevent uneven coloration or damage to your dental work, don’t use hydrogen peroxide or at-home bleaching kits if you have crowns, caps, or veneers.[17]
EditRelated wikiHows
Have Great Teeth

Brush Teeth Without Toothpaste

Brush Your Teeth

Keep Your Children Brushing Their Teeth

Care for Your Teeth

Deal With Dental Devices

Remove Popcorn from Your Teeth

EditSources and Citations
EditQuick Summary
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Today in History for 6th March 2019

Historical Events

1889 – German firm Bayer patents the medicine aspirin
1924 – British Labour government cuts military budget
1929 – Turkey and Bulgaria sign friendship treaty
1976 – 23rd ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament: Virginia beats North Carolina, 67-62
1976 – Ice Pairs Championship at Gothenburg won by Rodnina and Zaitsev (Soviet Union)
2015 – NASA’s Dawn space probe enters orbit around the dwarf planet Ceres

More Historical Events »

Famous Birthdays

1710 – Giuseppi Antonio Paganelli, composer
1893 – Kathleen Smoothy, housewife (last link to Siege of SIdney Street)
1900 – Robert “Lefty” Grove, baseball pitcher (300 game winner)
1916 – Rochelle Hudson, American actress (Les Misérables, Imitation of Life, That’s My Boy), born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (d. 1972)
1921 – Ross Hunter, American film producer (Airport, Madame X, Pillow Talk), born in Cleveland, Ohio (d. 1996) date of birth disputed)
1983 – Andranik Teymourian, Iranian soccer player

More Famous Birthdays »

Famous Deaths

1881 – Horatia Nelson, the illegitimate daughter of Emma Hamilton and Horatio Nelson (b. 1801)
1936 – Rubin Goldmark, American composer, dies at 63
1983 – Thelma Pelish, actress (Pajama Game), dies at 55
2006 – Dana Reeve, American actress, wife of Christopher Reeve and activist (Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation), dies of lung cancer at 44
2008 – Peter Poreku Cardinal Dery Cardinal Archbishop Emeritus of Tamale, Ghana
2017 – Robert Osborne, American film historian (Turner Classic Movies), dies at 84

More Famous Deaths »

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How to Distress Furniture

Distressing is a simple process that makes newer furniture look antique by manually adding wear and tear. You can distress wood, laminate, or metal easily by yourself to make your furniture unique. While the project does require paint with a chalky finish and sealing wax, you can finish the rest with tools and supplies around your own home. Once you’re finished distressing your furniture, you’ll have a brand new piece that looks like it’s been passed down for generations!

EditSteps
EditDistressing Wood and Laminate
Use chalky paint for your furniture. Chalky paint has a matte finish, goes on with minimal prep work, and is easier to scrape off while you’re distressing your furniture. Choose a paint color that matches the aesthetic in the rest of your room.[1]
Chalky paint is not the same as chalkboard paint. Chalkboard paint is meant to be written on with chalk after it dries, while chalky paint just has an ultra-matte finish.

You can buy chalky paint from any painting supply store.

Add dings and dents to the furniture surface for an extra-distressed look. Adding marks to a table surface or furniture legs can make it seem older than what it actually is. Lightly tap your furniture with the end of a chisel or hammer to make indents in the surface. Make the marks random so it doesn’t look like an intentional pattern.[2]
Wear safety glasses in case any wood accidentally breaks off your furniture.

Experiment with different tools around your house to see what kind of marks they make.

Sand the furniture if it has a finish on it. Use 120-grit sandpaper to roughen the surfaces on your piece of furniture. This helps the paint adhere better so it’s less likely to peel off or chip. Make sure to sand any surface you plan on painting so you get a nice even coat.[3]
You do not need to sand unfinished wood furniture.

Wipe the furniture with a damp cloth before painting. Wet a cleaning cloth with warm water and wring it out until it’s damp. Wipe all of the surfaces you plan on painting to get rid of any dust or dirt that’s on them. Use another cloth to dry any areas that are wet before you start.[4]

Apply a coat of paint and let it dry. Dip the ends of the bristles in your paint so there’s only a small amount on your paintbrush. Start from the top of your piece of furniture and work toward the bottom. Apply a thin layer of paint on the surface so it can dry fast and even. When you’re finished with the first coat, leave it to dry overnight.[5]
It’s okay if you still see the wood or laminate underneath your first coat of paint. This can help add to the distressed look of the final piece.

Paint a second coat onto your furniture and leave it to cure for 3-4 days. Once the first coat of paint has dried completely, put another coat of paint on your piece. Again, work from the top of the furniture down toward the bottom, and paint until it has a smooth matte finish. When you’re done, let it dry for 3-4 days so the paint has time to adhere to the furniture.[6]

Sand edges and common places of wear and tear with 120-grit sandpaper. Corners and edges are usually the first parts that wear away over time, so start by distressing them. Use 120-grit sandpaper to rub the dry paint off of the surface to expose the wood or laminate underneath. Apply light pressure so you don’t accidentally remove more than you want.[7]
Add more distress marks where your furniture touches the floor so it looks like it’s been scratched up after moving around a lot.

Wipe any dust away with a damp rag so you can easily see where you’ve already distressed the furniture.

If you accidentally rub off too much of the paint, you may paint over the area again and start over.

Seal the wood and paint with finishing wax. Wax acts as a sealant to help protect your furniture from any damage. Dip the end of a cheesecloth in the wax and spread it across the surface of your furniture. Work the wax into the surface in a circular motion until it’s smooth. Continue waxing the entire piece of furniture so it’s sealed.[8]
Furniture wax can be bought from your local hardware or paint supply stores.

Wax may take up to 30 days to completely cure, but you can use the furniture after one week.

EditAging Metal Furniture
Wipe any dust and dirt off with a cleaning cloth. Get the end of a cleaning cloth damp with warm water and use it to clean off your metal. Make sure to clean off all of the surfaces that you’re painting so the paint can adhere well to them. Dry off any spots that are still wet.[9]
Avoid sanding your metal since it will leave noticeable scratches.

Paint 1 coat of chalky paint onto your furniture and let it dry. Buy a container of chalky paint and soft-bristled paintbrush from your local paint supply store. Dip the end of your brush into the paint and apply a thin layer to your metal furniture. Work from the top of the piece down toward the bottom until it’s entirely covered in paint. Leave the paint to dry overnight so it has a chance to cure.[10]
Make sure not to use chalkboard paint instead of chalky paint. Chalky paint has a matte finish and is usually used for distressing, while chalkboard paint is meant to be written on once it’s dry.

It’s okay if the first coat doesn’t cover the metal evenly since it will make your piece look more distressed.

Apply a second coat of paint and let it cure for 3-4 days. Once the first layer is completely dry, put on another coat of paint until your furniture has even color. Once all of the exposed metal is covered with paint, let it dry for 3-4 days so the paint has time to settle.[11]
Don’t try to distress the metal while it’s curing because the more paint may peel off of the metal than you want.

Wipe areas with a damp cloth to distress them. Get the corner of a cleaning cloth wet and rub any areas where you want to expose the metal underneath the paint. Work around edges and corners since they’re areas where distress naturally happens first. Apply light pressure to lift up the paint.[12]
If you accidentally remove to much paint, pat the area dry and cover the spot with another coat.

Seal the paint with finishing wax to protect it. Dip the end of a cheesecloth in the finishing wax and pick up a small amount from the container. Rub the wax onto the paint in circular or back and forth motions until it’s clear. Coat the entire piece of furniture so it’s protected and won’t get easily damaged.[13]
If your furniture feels waxy, keep buffing it out with a cloth until it doesn’t.

EditWarnings
Wear safety glasses if you try to add your own wear and tear to your furniture.

EditThings You’ll Need
EditDistressing Wood and Laminate
Chisel or hammer

Safety glasses

Chalky paint

Cleaning cloth

Bristle paintbrush

120-grit sandpaper

Finishing wax

Cheesecloth

EditAging Metal Furniture
Cleaning cloth

Bristle paintbrush

Chalky paint

Cheesecloth

Finishing wax

EditSources and Citations
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