Doing What Works
Western lifestyles have taught us to believe that the products we use in our homes and on our persons are terribly complex things that must be formulated by experts in laboratories and then manufactured in factories. We have given up on finding our own knowledge and wisdom in these regards. Which is sad, since those “experts” who are formulating products in factories have very different drivers from the ones you might have if you were creating the product for yourself.
Ingredients are selected to be cheap, to be easy to work with in a factory setting, to be shelf-stable for months or years in a store and to “look good” for marketing and packaging. These kinds of considerations would not be upper-most in your mind if you were formulating the product, would they?
For myself my first concern is health and safety. I know that the things I put in my mouth (like toothpaste) and the things I put on my skin are actually taken up through those tissues... I am absorbing them just as surely as if I was eating it with a spoon. And even if I am taking in relatively low doses of these products, still I am taking them in a few times a day every day for my whole life. So safety is paramount.
Then I demand efficacy. I need the stuff I use to be the best possible solution for the job. If I brush my teeth with a product they must not just be cleaned, they must also be also be strengthened by the process. I expect the toothpaste not to build up on my toothbrush and to actually disinfect it too since (did you know) one of the biggest issues with dental hygiene is an unsanitary toothbrush!
After a lot of research, a lot of trial and error, and many years now of constantly using it, I am now very confident in my recommendation to you of what I believe to be perhaps the very best possible toothpaste. And it's really very simple to make at home.
Here is what you need:
Sodium Bicarbonate (also called Baking Soda)
Essential oil of peppermint (optional but recommended)
Essential oil of clove (optional but recommended)
A smallish airtight container (perhaps 100ml in size)
A small “egg cup” type dish
Hydrogen peroxide (12% or 40 volume – can be weaker but NO STRONGER THAN THAT)
A small “eye dropper” type bottle
Place some bicarb in the airtight container so that it is perhaps 80% full.
Decide if you are going to use essential oils in your toothpaste. You can use any you like but I use peppermint for fresh breath and clove for it's long-lasting disinfectant properties.
Drop just a few drops of your chosen essential oil into the bicarb. I use about 4 drops peppermint and 2 or 3 drops of clove in about 100ml of bicarb. You can experiment to get the formulation right for your taste. Seal the container and shake until completely mixed. The oil and the powder mixes quite easily. That's the first part of the prep.
The second part of the prep is even easier. Make sure your eye dropped bottle is really, really clean. If there is anything in it, it will react with the peroxide and degrade it. If it is clean then fill the bottle with the peroxide.
That's it! You are ready to brush your teeth.
Before we do... a note about peroxide. This is an amazing chemical as it is a sterilizer that leaves behind only water and oxygen when it's done working. So it's really non toxic. At low concentrations the human body knows what to do with peroxide since the body itself produces and uses peroxide. White blood cells use peroxide to kill pathogens in your body. A research paper I read seemed to indicate that peroxide actually stimulated a positive immune response to the area. What I am saying here is that peroxide, as a chemical, is know to your body and CAN be very beneficially and safely used. The trick is CONCENTRATION. Too much peroxide, too concentrated and you can blister your skin. This is why I say you should never use it stronger than 12% (also called 40 volume sometimes). That's really the “upper end” of how strong it should be. Importantly, even at this strength you really don't want to put a lot of it in your mouth neat. Gargle with neat 40 strength and you'll be sorry. It will burn! What you want to do is put just 5 drops of peroxide into the egg cup. Then gently “tap out” a little of your bicarb mix onto that. Add enough powder to mix with the liquid to make a stiff paste. Immediately pick that up with your toothbrush and get brushing. This way you have a small quantity of peroxide that is immediately diluted with the saliva in your mouth and that goes to work destroying bacterial, breaking down food particles and getting into all the tight corners inside your mouth where it cleans like a champ.
Brush as normal.
The first few times will be odd. For one thing this doesn't foam like normal toothpaste because it doesn't contain any detergent – yes your normal toothpaste has the same ingredient as dish-washing liquid, actual detergent, to make it foam! And because detergent tastes truly awful, the manufacturers hide the taste with super over-powering minty tastes. As a result we have come to expect the “nuked taste bud effect”. Instead there will be a very slight foaming as the peroxide goes to work and releases oxygen.Each time a peroxide mollecule attacks a bacterium, it will release an oxygen atom. This is how it oxidises the bacteria to death. So those small bubbles are great news. The peroxide will also oxidise and break down bits of food stuck between your teeth. Your mouth tissues are protected against peroxide at this concentration so they aren't also oxidised. If you have small lesions in your mouth (which is not uncommon), you will feel a bit of a tingle as the peroxide sterilzes those abrasions. This will allow them to heal more quickly.
The bicab acts as a very gentle scrubbing agent helping to polish and whiten your teeth. Importantly, the bicarb also creates an alkalai environment in your mouth which helps the teeth to remineralize. This is great news. It means your teeth are actually getting stronger!
Brush properly but not overly vigorously. Then rinse your mouth and brush as normal. Notice how your toothbrush has lost (some or all) of the gunky build-up that it got from normal toothpaste? Amazingly your toothbrush is cleaned and lightly sterilized each time your use the bicarb-perox paste!
Notice also how your mouth feels:
Teeth really smooth and clean? Check!
Tastebuds not nuked with mint abuse? Check!
But breath still nice and clean and fresh? Check!
And, if you are anything like me you'll actually FEEL how your teeth feel stronger and healthier. I feel that every time. Like they get more dense and solid from the bicarb-perox paste.
And so there you go... best thing of all... isn't it nice to know you are not putting fluoride in your mouth? That stuff is highly toxic and totally unnecessary.
And wait till you see how cheap this is. A small bottle of peroxide and a small box of bicarb, costing just a few dollars each, will last your whole family many months.
And here comes the Kai-Zing challenge:
I challenge you to try this for two weeks. It's really cheap and easy to try. You have nothing to lose. At worst you'll find some reason why this is not a good option for you. At best you'll empower yourself in knowing that you are taking a step towards taking responsibility for what goes into your body, you'll be cleaning and protecting your teeth and saving some cash.
Please try it and drop a comment in the comment box below. I'd love to hear how this worked (or not) for you...