Make Your Own and Save - Toothpaste and Mouthwash
Most people have never thought to make their own toothpaste and mouthwash. Making your own toothpaste and mouthwash can save you money though. And I think better for you. Actually, you don't even really need toothpaste and mouthwash. It is the actual brushing motion and flossing that clean your teeth. The amount of time you brush is also important (2-4 minutes is recommended). The toothpaste does make your mouth feel fresher and many have added ingredients that the companies claim will benefit you, but do they really? Why should I spend dollars on a tube of toothpaste, when I can make my own very effective toothpaste for dimes?
Reading the ingredients on a box of toothpaste I have is difficult. I can't pronounce many of the words. I actually have no idea what exactly I am putting in my mouth twice a day. Of course I pay several dollars per tube assuming it is perfectly safe, but I don't really know. The ingredients needed to make your own toothpaste and mouthwash can be purchased for relatively cheap and could last years.
Baking soda is my favorite. When I was growing up my grandmother taught me to sprinkle a little baking soda in the palm of my hand and after wetting my toothbrush, dip it in the baking soda and brush. This will help to whiten your teeth. This was the 1970s - long before whitening toothpaste was on the store shelves. I laugh to see how the boxes advertise that their toothpaste now contains baking soda to whiten their teeth. I have been doing it all along, for a fraction of a penny per brush. Straight baking soda will also whiten better than a small amount in a tube of toothpaste. Baking soda will also freshen your breath and kill germs. You can fill a container with mostly baking soda and a small amount of salt and keep it in your medicine cabinet. The salt acts as an abrasive to help scrub the plaque off your teeth.
If you don't like the powder form of toothpaste, you can add glycerin and water to the baking soda and salt to form more of a paste. You can even add flavored oils to get that mint fresh feeling of store bought toothpaste. The exact recipe I found is this -
3 parts baking soda
1 part salt
Mix together a total of 1/4 cup of the above
Add 3 tablespoons of glycerin and water until it forms a paste to the consistency you prefer. At this point add the flavored oils if you like. To me this only adds to the price of making your own. If you are definitely making your own to save money, you will probably be like me and leave it out. Store any leftovers in an airtight container.
I have also seen recipes that call for hydrogen peroxide in the ingredients. An easy one is 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon of hydrogen peroxide and 1 drop peppermint oil. Mix all together and dip your brush in.
Freshening your breath is also easy to do - for little money. If you have your own herb garden, this will be super easy and cheap. Break off a piece of fresh parsley or peppermint and chew. This natural breath freshener will last much longer than a tic-tac.
Homemade mouthwashes are even easier and very inexpensive! Mixing a small amount of water with a 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda, a drop of tea tree oil and a drop of peppermint oil will leave your mouth feeling fresh for a long time. It also helps eliminate bad breath as well as kills germs. Or try just dissolving a small spoonful of baking soda in a glass of water and swishing and spitting out. There are other more complicated (read more expensive) recipes that look good, but I for one like the simpler ones best though.
Another easy mouthwash recipe is half water and half 3% hydrogen peroxide. Swish and spit, don't swallow. Do you see a pattern here in ingredients? Baking soda and hydrogen peroxide are both very cheap and will last you a very long time. And both do a great job keeping your teeth clean.
As you can see, you really don't need to spend much on taking care of your teeth. It is more the time spent than anything. Simple, cheap, easy to use ingredients will go a long way in keeping your teeth and gums healthy and clean. And there are no ingredients that you can't pronounce. Taking a few minutes and using items that you probably already have in your house will save you a lot of money every year.