Can I whiten my teeth with lemons or lemon essential oil without damaging them? I know natural lemon is acidic, but will the essential oil work? I read online that lemon oil will whiten teeth without damaging them. If I can find natural alternatives to teeth bleaching, that would be great. So, if not lemons, I’m interested in anything else I can do at home. Thanks. Kamilya
Whitening your teeth can refresh your smile. If your teeth are in good condition, brighter teeth can look like you’ve had a smile makeover.
Does Citric Acid from Lemons Whiten Teeth?
Citric acid from lemons etches tooth enamel, temporarily giving it a frosty surfer and making it look whiter. However, roughened tooth enamel will eventually attract more stains, making your teeth look worse.
Some Internet articles claim that the citric acid in lemons kills bacteria and whitens teeth. However, pigments in food and drink, not bacteria, cause stains on teeth. Regular toothbrushing removes bacteria-causing plaque. You don’t need lemons to do that.
Do Lemons Damage Tooth Enamel?
Repeatedly using lemons or regularly eating them will thin tooth enamel. The least abrasive over-the-counter whitening system is Crest 3DWhitestrips. However, the 3DWhitestrips are less effective than professional bleaching gel from a dentist. Ask your dentist about a take-home whitening kit if you want an alternative to in-office whitening.
Carbamide peroxide in bleaching gel penetrates tooth enamel to break down stains and whiten teeth. The gel will not erode tooth enamel unless you overuse it. A dentist can monitor your whitening progress to minimize sensitivity and prevent over-bleaching.
We recommend an exam from a dentist to determine whether teeth whitening is safe for your teeth based on the cause of the stains in them. Otherwise, the dentist will recommend cosmetic dentistry alternatives to address your concerns about tooth stains, spots, or discoloration.
Metairie, Louisiana, dentist Dr. Duane Delaune sponsors this post.