Is Urine An Effective Tooth-Whitener?

Is it true that drinking or rinsing with urine every day will make your teeth whiter? The claim does seem counterintuitive, as most people would probably think that drinking urine would make your teeth turn yellow.

What is it that’s in urine that causes this effect?


Somehow I knew just by reading the title of this thread who was going to turn out to be the author.

How about some cite that this effect actually occurs before we try to explain it?

Urine’s fairly acidic, isn’t it? If there is such an effect, that’d be my first guess.

As the guy with the question you could perofrm the field test. Commence gargling and let us know how it turns out. :slight_smile:

Of course it whitens your teeth but since they now smell like piss you still strike out with the women.

One would think that the vomiting that would occur afterward would eventually just rot your teeth away.

My teeth are not brilliant white. I have never rinsed with urine. Guess that would tend to lend credence to the OP’s theory.

Surely it would be more effective and fun to experiment to see if semen is an effective tooth whitener. :wink:

Not sure about urine=whitening, but eating feces is said to make you grin like a loon.

Why miss, you’ve got the whitest teeth I’ve ever come accross…


Colibri- “How about some cite that this effect actually occurs before we try to explain it?”

I don’t think anybody here will be able to find a link to a scientific study on the effectiveness of drinking urine at whitening teeth, but the historical record suggests that this is likely to be the case:

“Roman toothpaste was made with human urine, and could be used as a mouthwash in its liquid form. The urine from the Portuguese was considered the strongest and therefore the most expensive. (Urine as an ingredient in toothpaste continued to be used through the 18th century)”

Even if it did work, do you think ol’ Halitosticus would have been inclined to smile after a swig of Portugese bladder juice?

I’ve read (can’t remember now where) that drinking one’sown urine promotes general health. Supposedly it tastes like warm beer. That alone would be enough to put me off, but, to each his own. I have wanted something to whiten my tobacco stained teeth, but using mine or anyone’s urine is farther than I am willing to go. When I win the lotto I plan to get them capped. :cool:

You mean comparison studies were done? “Pepsi challenges” were performed?

“While the French urine has a pungent nose and robust color, and the Spanish urine has a much smoother aftertaste, all around quality must go to the Portuguese urine. Especially after the asparagus harvest.”

Question is, do you really need to have your teeth that white?

Come back when you can give me a site that takes history a bit more seriously. Or else give me another credible cite that backs up this one.

And, I read nothing that would indicate that urine makes your teeth whiter.


samclem GQ moderator

Opened again, at the sage advice of Bippy.

But, dammit, give me some primary cites here. Tired of internet factoids.

samclem GQ moderator

Like I said in my (redundant) thread questioning the closure, the closest thing to a cite for the belief that the Romans used urine for tooth-whitening that I have been able to find is Catallus’ poem On Egnatius of the White Teeth:

A modern English translation:

It seems to me that the source of the “Romans brushed their teeth with urine” meme may be a Roman poet attributing the practice to the inhabitants of Spain, rather than a recommendation of using urine for this purpose. So it may always have been a “Can you believe they could be so dirty?” sort of thing.

That being said, urine has been highly valued for practical purposes until the last coupla hundred years – particularly stale urine, valued for its ammonia.

I’ve heard this too, but I’m pretty sure it’s utter bullshit.

Cecil expresses skeptism about the supposed health benefits of drinking urine in the last section of this column. I imagine formal scientific studies one way or another are probably in short supply.