I really want whiter teeth and have considered visiting a cosmetic dentist many times. But I simply cannot get passed all the chemicals that are used to whiten teeth because I think they can be cancer causing. So when I heard that there is a new trend of holistic dentists popping up, I got excited. Will a holistic or natural cosmetic dentist offer safer teeth bleaching options without all the terrible chemicals?

– Ruby in Minnesota


The total body mindset is becoming very popular as of late. Holistically-minded individuals are seeking natural dentistry options now more than ever before. And there are starting to be more holistic dentists around to embrace this preference.

You are probably well aware that many daily products we use, from deodorant to cleaners are dangerous, and it is no different with certain products in dentistry. Some dentists hold to the traditional methods, products, and techniques they were trained on or learned about in dental school.

Most cosmetic dentists use teeth whitening products with the active ingredient of hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide. The stronger of the two is hydrogen peroxide and when used correctly and applied by a professional can give significantly whiter teeth. But if you have done your research, you may find that many believe that hydrogen peroxide has the possibility of being linked to cancer. There is no proof or documentation that successfully make the link. So most dentists don’t feel this treatment is harmful to patients, unless it is absorbed with the soft gum tissues. That is why cosmetic dentists will custom-make whitening trays to fit the exact shape of your teeth and prevent the gums from ever coming in contact with the whitening agent. For the in-office whitening methods, there are many safety precautions that are put in place to protect the soft tissue as well.

Take-home teeth whitening trays are typically carbamide peroxide containing. This method isn’t as strong which means it doesn’t deliver as drastic of results. Since the active whitening ingredient is weaker, many holistic dentists will go this route. So although you may still be dealing with some chemicals when whitening your teeth professionally, the take home trays are safer in regard to your concern about the chemicals in them.

An at-home natural teeth whitening method you may be interested in is brushing with a mixture of baking soda and lemon juice. This can be done for a couple minutes at a time and only a couple minutes per week. It is imperative that the teeth are rinsed immediately after application to avoid the harmful acidity of the mixture. If left on too long or done too frequently, your tooth enamel will suffer.

This post is sponsored by Atlanta cosmetic dentist Flax Dental.