It is not wrong to say that the teeth are indicators of the beauty of the face. Even top actors and actresses undergo dental cosmetic surgeries and whitening procedures in order to increase their ‘face’ value. A person with yellow or brown teeth is looked down upon. Hence it is extremely necessary to take proper care of teeth.
The mouth is the seat of the kapha dosha. Hence, care must be taken not to vitiate the kapha dosha. Problems with the kapha dosha lead to several oral and dental problems, including the loss of whiteness of the teeth.
However, many methods are known to the Indian science of Ayurveda by which a person can get the whiteness of teeth back. There are also methods to maintain whiteness of teeth. Many of these advantageous methods are mentioned in this article, with some other tips and pointers.
(1) Useful Herbs for Whitening of Teeth
1. Babul (Acacia arabica)
The importance of babul in whitening of teeth cannot be expressed in words. It is so much important in Ayurveda for this purpose that the ancient Indians used nothing but the twigs of the babul (the other tree used for this is neem) as disposable toothbrushes. The tannin present in babul is effective in increasing the whiteness of teeth.
2. Banyan (Ficus religiosa)
The aerial roots of the banyan can also be used as disposable toothbrushes. The banyan roots have astringent properties, which not only make the teeth whiter, but also make the teeth and gums healthier.
3. Holy Basil (Ocimum sanctum)
The leaves of the holy basil are dried in the sun and powdered and used for brushing teeth. The leaves help in maintaining dental hygiene and make the teeth whiter. Apart from the whitening properties, holy basil is also used for protection from problems such as pyorrhea (i.e. bleeding of gums).
4. Margosa (Azadirachtha indica)
The neem tree, or the margosa, is a traditional remedy for having white healthy teeth. Neem twigs are used by several Indians even today as toothbrushes. Neem oils contain astringent and antiseptic properties to fight bad breath, kill microorganisms accumulated on the teeth and to combat dental caries and cavities.
(2) Dietary Methods for Whitening of Teeth
In order to keep the teeth clean and white, pungent, bitter and astringent foods must be included in the daily diet. These tastes have an astringent effect on the teeth which helps to maintain them clean. They also take care of the excess buildup of plaque on the teeth, which makes them lose their pearly white color.
Sugary foods in any form are bad for the teeth. Chocolates are also not good. If you do consume such foods, you must remember to wash your mouth thoroughly with strong gargles so as not to leave any sweet residue in the mouth.
Avoid excess tea and coffee. These beverages contain strong alkaloids which can stain the teeth. The same is applicable to smoking. Almost every person who smokes will lose the white coloration of the teeth. Chewing of the paan (betel leaf), as is done in several Indian regions, is also disastrous to the whiteness of the teeth. This habit can stain the teeth cream, yellow or even a dirty shade of rust brown.
(3) Ayurvedic Methods for Whitening of Teeth
Ayurveda provides many kinds of toothpaste and toothbrushes for maintaining white healthy teeth. One of them is toothpaste made by mixing a paste of holy basil leaves with mustard oil. The neem and babul twigs are used as toothbrushes. They are rubbed vigorously on the teeth (sometimes with charcoal also) in order to remove all the plaque accumulated on the teeth and to make them whiter.
(4) Home Remedies for Whitening of Teeth
1. For teeth that have lost their white color, prepare a mixture of charcoal of babul wood, roasted alum and some rock salt. Rub this on the teeth instead of using the conventional toothpaste. You will have white and long-lasting healthy teeth.
2. You can try using sodium bicarbonate regularly each morning as a toothpowder instead of toothpaste. Sodium bicarbonate replenishes the lost mineral content of the teeth, which helps them to regain their whiteness.
3. Strawberries, tomatoes and amalaki contain good vitamin C content. These can be directly applied on the teeth. Vitamin C helps in removing the plaque on the teeth and makes them whiter.
4. Rub an orange peel on the teeth every night before going to sleep. The vitamin C of the orange peel will combat with the microorganisms all through the night.
5. Take adequate measures of dental hygiene. Brush your teeth after every meal, or at least in the morning and before going to bed. While brushing your teeth, take care to sweep out all the embedded food particles. This is the most natural way to keep your teeth white and healthy.