DIY Dental Home Remedies Don’t Replace Regular Checkups

diy dental home remedies don't replace regular dental checkupsAt Ultimate Smile Design, we advocate holistic dental care and have even written about some natural DIY dental treatments that may be effective. However, there are circumstances when home remedies are not effective and may damage your teeth. Preventive dental care begins at home but does not replace regular checkups and treatment for oral health issues.

DIY dental home remedies are risky because they could possibly damage your teeth and often are used as an alternative to professional dental care. Regular dental visits ensure your teeth and gums are healthy and allow patients to receive proper treatment for dental issues.

While DIY treatments may seem cost-effective, if dental issues are not addressed, they can lead to more extensive damage and, consequently, more expensive treatment.

Below you’ll find the latest information on at-home dental treatments that dentists have found to be ineffective or damaging. We hope this information helps you make wise decisions about DIY treatments for your oral health.

Ineffective DIY Dental Home Remedies


Using charcoal to whiten teeth is a trending topic on social media. Many users and product advertisements tout its effectiveness in cleaning and whitening teeth. Misleading advertisements claim claims charcoal has antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral properties.

However, according to the Journal of the American Dental Association, there is “insufficient clinical and laboratory data to substantiate the safety and efficacy claims of charcoal and charcoal-based dentifrices.” Two studies that examined the safety of charcoal reported enamel abrasion, which is cause to avoid using charcoal to clean or whiten your teeth.

Read Strong Tooth Enamel Begins with a Healthy Diet

DIY Teeth Whitening

There are many teeth whitening products and systems on the market. The concern is with their effectiveness, not necessarily their safety. If they carry the American Dental Association seal of approval, they are safe to use when you follow the instructions.

The method of teeth whitening and products used should be discussed with your dentist. There are several factors to consider, including the cause of the discoloration. If your teeth are externally discolored or stained, a whitening toothpaste or home whitening kit may be adequate. However, if your teeth are discolored due to medication, loss of enamel, aging, or trauma, professional in-office teeth whitening may be most effective and show the fastest results.

If you have active cavities or other dental conditions, whitening treatments may not be right for you, so we recommend getting your dentist’s advice before beginning such treatment.

Mail Order Tooth Aligners

Straightening teeth is a delicate process that requires a comprehensive exam to identify oral health concerns before treatment. Gum disease and cavities should be treated before orthodontic treatment begins. At-home straightening kits bypass the treatment of oral health issues and can result in worsening of conditions.

Also, consider that poorly fitted aligners may result in cut gums and further misalignment of teeth, which may cause the inability to close your mouth properly, difficulty chewing, and jaw pain.

Aligners work well for some patients, while others may need braces. A dentist or orthodontist will be able to determine the best course of treatment and will fit you for aligners that are expertly designed for your teeth.

Visit Your Dentist First

Before beginning any DIY dental home remedy, visit your dentist to determine the condition of your teeth and whether or not you are a good candidate for at-home treatment. It’s important to treat current dental health issues before any treatment begins.

At Ultimate Smile Design in Palm Bay, Florida, we make your dental experience as comfortable as possible. We specialize in dental procedures, from preventive care and cleaning to cosmetic dentistry and teeth whitening. Our dental office uses state of the art technology to ensure you get the very best treatment.