Is baking soda bad for your teeth?

Is baking soda bad for your teeth? Errrr…. The short answer is no, but it comes with some caveats. There are experts who claim that baking soda an actually cause wear on the enamel and gum tissue, but in this article we’ll dive deeper behind what “damage” is being blamed on baking soda. So let’s explore some true risks and benefits of using baking soda to brush your teeth.

The risks of using baking soda

If you decide to use baking soda to whiten your teeth, it’s paramount that you are aware of some of its side effects. For example:

  1. Abrasivity
  2. Aluminum in baking soda
  3. Not enough to fight cavities
  4. Not compatible with certain dental materials
  5. Leaves an uncomfortable aftertaste
  6. Not well packaged for oral use

Baking soda is a great cleaner due to its abrasive composition, however if you use it on a daily basis becomes damaging. Vigorous brushing and daily usage will slowly wear the enamel, making the teeth more sensitive and more prone to dental cavities. If you have porcelain crowns, the glaze on it will also be worn down by the effects of baking soda.

As for aluminum in baking soda? It’s just a myth. Baking soda doesn’t include aluminum; this myth came from some products claiming they were using aluminum-free baking soda, so don’t let this myth worry you.

Baking soda by itself is not effective enough to remove all plaque, leading to plaque buildup. And since it lacks fluoride, your teeth will not be protected against cavities. To prevent cavities, use a fluoride-based toothpaste.

The chemical structure of baking soda will tend to soften or weaken the glue or adhesive of dental fixtures or fittings and leaves dark sports due to the reaction with baking soda. So, you are advised against using baking soda if you have permanent retainers or braces.

Baking soda leaves a terrible taste in the mouth and an uncomfortable gritty feeling. To prevent this aftertaste, it’s advised to use it with a bit of toothpaste, or a flavor such as peppermint.

Toothpastes have excellent packaging whereas baking soda comes in messy packages. With this method of packaging, one cannot tell if any contamination has occurred.

Based on the above, daily use of baking soda is not recommended!

The benefits of using baking soda

  1. Teeth whitening
  2. Supports a healthier oral pH
  3. Fights bad breath
  4. Helps remove stains from teeth

Discoloration of our teeth comes when we are in contact with some beverages such as red wine, coffee, tea, soda and also smoking cigarette. If teeth are not regularly cleaned, plaque may accumulate and cause a yellowish discoloration. Baking soda can be an effective treatment for both issues, resulting in teeth whitening.

Generally, the lower the pH in your mouth, the higher the disk of tooth decay. Since pH levels have a significant role in determining the population of bacteria that lives in our mouth, baking soda helps support a more alkaline oral pH which gently nudges our mouths to become more alkaline.

Residual acid forming foods are the main cause of bad breath and baking soda helps balance the acidic levels of those food residuals in your mouth.

When mixed with water, baking soda forms an alkaline solution that releases free radicals that facilitate teeth whitening, giving you a brighter smile.

Risks VS Benefits

From the previously mentioned pros and cons, we can draw the conclusion that if used properly, baking soda helps us work towards optimal oral health. But remember, baking soda, on its own, lacks many of the necessities regarding oral care.

Is baking soda bad for your teeth?

Its abrasive nature causes more harm than good to your teeth in the long run, so it’s crucial to consult with your dentist on the best baking soda toothpaste to use. Don’t just use baking soda alone in order to assure optimal oral and dental health. In the long run you’ll risk damaging your teeth and spend more time and money if you just use baking soda powder for your teeth.