Did you know that baking soda has been used as a tooth cleanser for over 150 years? Unfortunately, it got the reputation as being abrasive to the enamel. Nothing could be further from the truth. Usually toothpastes are rated on a scale from 0 – 200 according to their abrasiveness. This is called the RDA value or “Relative Dentin Abrasiveness”. Pure baking soda has an RDA of 7. Did you know the closest RDA to this is 35, which is Arm & Hammer baking soda toothpaste?
There are many reasons for using baking soda for brushing teeth. It is not only the least abrasive substance to use but it also whitens teeth, removes stain, and is also an effective germ killer against the bacteria that cause tooth decay and gum disease.
According to Pubmed, “An earlier clinical study demonstrated that brushing with a commercial Arm & Hammer dentifrice containing baking soda physically removed significantly more plaque than brushing with either of two commercial dentifrices which did not contain baking soda. However, little has been done to confirm these results and to compare baking soda-containing dentifrices with more recently commercialized non-baking soda dentifrice formulations. The objective of this study was to compare commercial dentifrices containing 20% to 65% baking soda and commercial dentifrices without baking soda in enhancing plaque removal efficacy of tooth brushing.”
Baking Soda and Your Teeth:
- Changes pH of the oral cavity – a healthy mouth is non-acidic, neutral or alkaline. Sodium bicarbonate has been suggested to increase the pH in the oral cavity, potentially neutralizing the harmful effects of bacterial metabolic acids.
- Is a polishing agent – due to the abrasive nature of sodium bicarbonate, plaque layered on the enamel of teeth are scrubbed off. With reference to the relative dentin abrasion tests done on straight sodium bicarbonate, its abrasiveness is favorable with low abrasivity to the overall state of the enamel. This is as compared to other oral formulations, dentifrices and brands. Sodium bicarbonate, therefore, when used in the correct amount, is an effective polishing agent.
- Increases calcium uptake by the enamel which strengthens the enamel.
- Bicarbonate has been shown to decrease dental plaque acidity induced by sucrose, and its buffering capacity plays a major role in preventing dental cavities. Studies have shown that bicarbonate inhibits plaque formation on teeth and, in addition, increases calcium uptake by dental enamel. This effect of bicarbonate on teeth is so well recognized that tooth powder containing sodium bicarbonate was patented in the USA in October 1985.
HOW TO BRUSH WITH BAKING SODA
1) Pour some baking soda into a small dish or container.
2) Dampen your toothbrush with water.
3) Dip the toothbrush in the baking soda and get as much baking soda to stick to it as possible.
4) Brush your teeth for two minutes.
5) Brush the tongue for 20 seconds as well. Many germs live on the tongue.
6) Rinse with water.