Can Strawberries Whiten Teeth?

Updated: 1 day ago

Have you seen the video on how to do it? You got the ingredients in your market pantry right so what are you waiting for? Let's go but wait, what's the verdict? Good or bad?

So what are you thinking, are you willing to give it a try?

Table of Contents

How to whiten your teeth with strawberries:

  1. Mash up a couple of strawberries with a fork.

  2. Mix in some baking soda.

  3. Use a soft toothbrush and apply the mixture to your teeth.

  4. Let the mixture marinade on your teeth for 5 minutes.

  5. Brush your teeth with your usual toothpaste and floss to get rid of any strawberry residues.

  6. Rinse your mouth out with mouthwash to get rid of any residual acids.

  7. Enjoy your new white smile.

Can strawberries whiten your teeth?

According to dental researchers at the University of Iowa, the homemade organic mixture of strawberries cannot whiten your teeth. This mixture can only remove superficial debris that is on your teeth and cannot penetrate beyond the surface layer like other professional dental whitening products.

The experiment tested the baking soda mixture on 20 extracted teeth 3 times each day over the course of 10 days total. The results were unimpressive and abysmal with no noticeable whitening effect on your teeth.

Where did the idea that strawberries can whiten your teeth come from?

Strawberries contain citric acid and malic acid, which can be used as an exfoliating ingredient for brightening your skin and the idea was that it can also be used to brighten your teeth. Unfortunately the malic acid isn't potent enough to penetrate past the outer enamel layer to remove more than just the surface stains.

Your teeth do look whiter temporarily after using the mixture because you just removed plaque from the surface of your teeth. Although after an hour or so, your teeth will revert back to what it looked like before so the whitening effects of strawberries are short lasting.

If you didn't have any surface stains on your teeth prior to the procedure, this flurry of strawberry and baking soda mix will not have any effect at all. Just to be clear, any toothpaste or baking soda paste will also give the same effect.

Is this teeth whitening method harmful?

This is indeed an all natural home remedy for teeth whitening but the verdict by our long island city dentists would be that it is indeed harmful. The simple fact that malic acid is an acid is what makes it harmful to your teeth.

Intentionally putting acid on your teeth can cause enamel erosion. In this case, you are actively rubbing the acid on your teeth and then proceeding to let it sit on your teeth for over 5 minutes. That is a lot of time to erode your enamel. Then there is also the fact that strawberries also have sugar naturally within it, which is a recipe for tooth decay.

The critical pH level of the mouth is an important concept to remember for this.

  • Cavities and enamel erosion begin when the pH of the oral cavity drops below 5.5

  • Malic acid has a pH of 3.33 so it is potent enough to start dissolving enamel.

We would recommend checking out our hydroxyapatite toothpaste article to learn more about critical pH levels.

Therefore in addition to possibly causing enamel erosion, the malic acid will also create an environment that would be favorable to form cavities. We advise against using this method for whitening teeth due to the risks that are involved. It could potentially cause more damage to your teeth than what little benefit it can offer in return.

Enamel erosion
Enamel erosion

Alternative whitening methods

If you want to effectively whiten your teeth, there are over the counter and professional teeth whitening products:

  • Whitening toothpastes

  • Over the counter whitening strips such as the Crest Whitening Strips

  • Take home whitening kits by your dentist

  • Professional in office bleaching

Any of these teeth whitening products will be safer for your teeth and will also be more effective in brigthening them. You can try the at home solutions first because if they work, that would be the simplest and most cost effective way. The professional solutions by your dentist are more effective than the at home but they may also cause increased sensitivity for your teeth afterwards.

The reason why professional whitening products work is because they contain actual whitening ingredients:

  • Hydrogen peroxide

  • Carbamide peroxide

These are the only two whitening agents that have been shown to be able to penetrate past the surface enamel layer to oxidize stains and brighten your teeth. If your home made solution does not contain either of these materials, then it probably won't whiten your teeth.

Take away:

With all of that being taken into account, our dentists in long island city would have to recommend against using strawberries to whiten your teeth because it is simply not effective nor is it beneficial. So, don't bother trying this home remedy to get your teeth whiter. If you want to try something simple and easy, use a combination of whitening toothpaste along with the whitening strips at home instead.

Although if you want a professional whitening solution, our LIC dentists at our Jackson Avenue Dental office offer KoR whitening. The system first uses a 14 day take home kit followed by 3 rounds of 20 minute in office sessions back to back. It will be significantly more effective than the strawberries for whitening.

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