White spots on teeth make some people avoid smiling. Everybody wants to flash a beautiful smile with a set of bright white teeth. But this condition, known medically as hypocalcification, is very common and occurs in people of all ages.
Although the white spots are not always immediately visible, once you see them, you become self-conscious about it and this can affect your self-confidence.
White spots develop on the teeth for various reasons. Some common causes include fluorosis (a condition that damages the teeth enamel), decalcification, loss of mineral in the teeth, excessive consumption of acidic fruits and drinks that damage the enamel, acidity, dry mouth, poor oral hygiene and braces on the teeth.
If the cause of the problem is fluorosis or excessive calcium secretion, then you need to be serious about your oral health.
1. Use Oil Pulling
Oil pulling is an age-old technique that helps maintain good oral hygiene. Oil pulling helps remove any buildup of plaque from your teeth and prevents cavities from forming. This in turn reduces the risk of white spots on your teeth.
In a 2017 review published in the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine, researchers found that oil pulling helps reduce the overall number of bacteria in the mouth and can help reduce the amount of plaque on the teeth.
For oil pulling, one of the best oils that you can use is extra-virgin coconut oil.
- Put 1 or 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin coconut oil in your mouth.
- Swish the oil around in your mouth for up to 20 minutes, then spit it out.
- Finally, rinse your mouth and then brush your teeth as usual.
- Do this daily in the morning on an empty stomach.
2. Maintain Good Oral Hygiene
One of the main reasons white spots occur is because of poor oral hygiene. Hence, the first step you need to take to remove the ugly spots is maintain good oral hygiene.
In fact, white spots are easily preventable with thorough and regular brushing and flossing, which prevents the accumulation of plaque on the teeth.
Brush twice daily and make sure that you brush all the different surfaces of your teeth. Also, use a fluoride rinse to keep your teeth clean.
As normal brushing can be difficult while wearing braces, you can use specialized toothbrushes as well as floss that help you brush and floss more easily through the wires. You can also try using a water irrigator that uses pulsating water to remove plaque between the teeth.
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3. Rinse with a White Vinegar Solution
White vinegar contains acetic acid that can help prevent demineralization of teeth enamel. Plus, it can prevent and reduce accumulation of plaque, which is one of the reasons behind the development of white spots on the teeth.
- Thoroughly mix 2 teaspoons of white vinegar and 1 teaspoon of salt in ½ cup of warm water.
- Use it to rinse your mouth twice a day.
4. Avoid Acidic Foods
Eating too many acidic foods is another common cause of white spots on the teeth. Acidic foods and drinks can wear away the enamel on your teeth. This outer layer of enamel protects your teeth from damage and, if the outer layer gets worn down or removed, it can result in white spots and other oral problems.
Hence, avoiding acidic foods in excess is another preventive measure to stop the formation of white spots on the teeth. Some acidic foods that you must avoid are sour candy, lemons, oranges, grapefruits, carbonated soda and lemonade.
At the same time, you must limit the intake of foods high in phytic acid, as it impairs the absorption of calcium, zinc and iron. Foods that contain high amounts of phytic acid are brown rice, beans, peas, grains, seeds and nuts. You can enjoy these foods but in moderation.
5. Prevent Dry Mouth to Remove White spots.
Minimize mouth dryness as much as possible to reduce and prevent white spots on your teeth. In fact, dry mouth is one of the leading causes of this problem.
When your mouth is dry, it will hold bacteria and allow it to grow. The acid from the bacteria will attack your teeth, which in turn will cause white spots.
As saliva is important to prevent dry mouth, you must increase your fluid intake to boost the production of saliva. Proper hydration will make it easier for your body to produce more saliva.
Drink an ample amount of water throughout the day. Also, eat water-based fruits and vegetables like pineapple, watermelon and cucumbers.
Avoid caffeinated beverages, sodas and alcoholic drinks, as they can have a dehydrating effect.
- After every meal, clean your mouth as well as your teeth thoroughly to remove food particles that get stuck between the teeth.
- Dry brushing or brushing with plain water can also be practiced to gently clean your teeth.
- Those who smoke should start take steps to quit, as it is bad for your oral health.
- Avoid drinking alcohol to protect your teeth from unwanted chemicals.
- Children under age 6 should use only a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste. Also, make sure they do not swallow it.
- Visit your dentist every six months for a regular dental checkup.
- If you are pregnant, talk with your dentist or obstetrician about fluoride intake and any medications that could interfere with your unborn child’s developing teeth.