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Dental and Oral Health (Adults)

Does baking soda help?

05/06/2009

Question:

Does baking soda help reduce plaque? I have been dipping my toothbrush in toothpaste then baking soda. It has removed the stains on my teeth; and although my teeth are not "whiter" I am pleased with the results. At my most recent dental cleaning the hygeinest seemed to spend Much Less time picking at my teeth, especially my two "trouble teeth" with a lot of exposed roots. This was even after I had to due to life complications delay my usual cleaning by 3 months. I have gum grafting all along my bottom teeth, but the corner front teeth still have exposed roots which normally cause pain during cleaning. When I had my gum grafting the periodontist said I unusually sticky plaque, because I had just brushed my teeth, he said I did a good job, yet there was still residue. So does the baking soda help?

Answer:

Baking soda does remove stain; however, it is much too abrasive to use each day. My concern is that you are not only removing stain from your teeth but also microns of enamel. I am also concerned about the areas of recession/graphing you described. The root surface is not covered with hard enamel but with a softer cementum and it can be easily brushed away with incorrect brushing technique or an abrasive paste.

I would suggest that you stop using the baking soda until you see your dentist/hygienist the next time. They can answer these questions and tailor their recommendations to your specific needs.

You could also try an American Dental Association (ADA) approved toothpaste that contains baking soda if you prefer it.

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Response by:

Susan   Bauchmoyer, RDH, EFDA,  MS Susan Bauchmoyer, RDH, EFDA, MS
Associate Professor – Clinical, Clinic Director
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University

Wendy  J Moore, RDH, EFDA, BS, MS Wendy J Moore, RDH, EFDA, BS, MS
Clinical Associate Professor of Dental Hygiene
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University