I figure I clean my house eco-friendly, why not my mouth?
Over the holidays, I was sitting with plenty of family member and we were discussing everything. My uncle asked if I still do the “eco-friendly thing”. I guess he thought it was a phase. Something the cool kids do. I said “yep, still doing it, saves me a ton of money”. So, the discussion at the table turned to natural ways to clean. I feel I’ve had this discussion with them a dozen times before, but wine being poured during conversation mixed with these people aren’t getting any younger, or most of them just don’t know what to chat with me about. I’ll just go with they are just getting old (haha).
I explained baking soda mixed with distilled white vinegar makes the toilet clean itself with a chemical reaction, to where I was saying baking soda this, and baking soda that. That a hundred years ago people were brushing their teeth with baking soda and crust from bread.
That’s when it hit me. I never actually looked into eco-friendly ways to brush my teeth, but I guarantee others have, so time for a little research.
I started with the toothbrush. I read that 4.7 billion plastic toothbrushes are bought every year. That is a lot of non-biodegradable product being thrown away. The plastic brush can be recycled, but I’m guessing most just toss in the bathroom trash can.
The most popular substitution I found is a Bamboo Toothbrush.
An ecological bamboo toothbrush will last just as long as a conventional plastic toothbrush. The American Dental Association recommends replacing your toothbrush every 3 months, or when the bristles have frayed. Not to mention the bamboo toothbrush looks pretty cool. I found a bunch of different ones over at Amazon. So, I just looked for one that was right for me. The bristols aren’t biodegradable, but they are recyclable. The brush itself is said to return to soil with 6 months. There it is, an eco-friendly toothbrush. Off to a good start I’d say.
The Easy Toothpaste
-½ a cup of Baking Soda
-¼ cup of Hydrogen Peroxide
-¼ cup of warm water
Stir these ingredients together to form a paste and brush your teeth as normal.
I ran into a problem with this one. I just didn’t want a bunch of hydrogen peroxide in my mouth. I read you don’t have to use it, you can just use baking soda and water.
Which brought to looking for another Do-It-Yourself solution. I found a pretty cool natural toothpaste recipe.
Natural Toothpaste Recipe
- ½ cup Coconut Oil
- 2-3 Tablespoons of Baking Soda
- 2 packets of Stevia Powder
- 15-20 drops of Peppermint or Cinnamon Essential Oil
- Melt or slightly soften coconut oil. I did it on the stove, but a microwave would work too.
- Mix in other ingredients and stir well. If using semi-hard coconut oil, use a fork, if not, use a spoon. If you are using completely melted coconut oil, you will need to stir several times while the mixture cools to keep the baking soda incorporated.
- Pour the mixture into small glass jar.
- Let cool completely.
- To use: dip toothbrush in and scrape small amount onto bristles. You can also use a small spoon to put the mixture onto the toothbrush.
This is actually a winner in my book. It’s easy to make, works well, and tastes great.
This brought me to one I wasn’t sure if I was going to find a solution to: Natural Teeth Whitener.
Now, back in the old glory days of Hollywood, the movie stars would swish hydrogen peroxide in their mouths like it was mouthwash. And yes it works. With smoking being almost a necessity back in the 1940’s and 50’s, the actors and actresses had to keep the teeth pearly white removing tobacco stains, especially when black and white film turned to color and their teeth were now a few feet wide.
Turns out there is really cool and simple solution: CHARCOAL.
“Um, What?” That was my first reaction. So, taking one of the darkest, dirtiest, messiest things on the planet and use it to whiten my teeth?
There a quite a few products for this solution. Including a charcoal bristle bamboo toothbrush. It’s as if my research was coming full circle. That is a good sign.
Activated charcoal is a highly absorbent substance. It removes toxins when they adhere to the surface of the charcoal. It is not absorbed by the body, but passes through the GI system, so chemicals and toxins adhere to it, which then pass through the body and are expelled by the digestive system.
That’s a bit too scientific for me, but it’s the reason why it works.
Whitening Your Teeth With Charcoal
- Dip a clean, wet toothbrush into the powdered charcoal. Lean over the container of charcoal and quickly put the charcoal covered toothbrush in your mouth (this is to protect your sink). Brush in small, gentle circles for 2 minutes, spit carefully and rinse really well.
It’s recommended to do this twice a week
Which has me at my final part of my morning brushing routine. Mouthwash.
I actually didn’t research this one. This my own solution. When I was a kid and had a toothache my mom would put some salt in a small glass of warm water and have me swish it around in my mouth and then rinse. It temporarily would solve the problem until a dentist appointment was made. So I incorporated this into my solution.
- 3 Tablespoons of Warm Water
- 1 Tablespoon of Salt
- 15 drops of Peppermint Essential Oil
- Combine the ingredients in a glass and stir.
- Swish the concoction in your mouth as you would normal mouthwash and spit.
That sums it up. You can clean your mouth eco-friendly. It may seem like a lot, but it really isn’t. The solution isn’t terribly expensive. The funny thing is you can clean your home with most these ingredients. Well, I’d skip the charcoal on that one. Bad joke, I know. Have a great day!