Smoking aside from running rampant with your health also stains everything. Nicotine itself is an oily liquid that seeps into our skin in its purest form. When it is released in cigarette smoke, nicotine is released with tar from the tobacco. The tar combined with the nicotine in cigarette smoke will stain finger, teeth, walls, and any other porous surface. These stains are not noticed immediately, but one day every smoker wakes up and notices their index and middle finger of their smoking hand have yellowed at the tip.
Other than the obvious way to prevent these stains, which is to stop smoking, smokers can help prevent them by washing their hands as much as possible. however, once the stains set in they only get harder to get rid of.
Treating Nicotine Stains on Fingers
There are a lot of different products that boast the ability to remove stains from skin. They use harsh chemicals that dry your skin and crack your nails don't always leave you with the desired stain-free amount of skin.
As weird as it may seem, cut a potato in half and rub it on the stained areas of your skin. Potatoes are a strange little vegetable. Since they contain large amounts of water, they can soak up many. They can get excess salt out of food and rubbing the juice on your skin and letting it set for 30 minutes can draw out stains. As the potato juice evaporates, it brings the nicotine stain out with it.
Similar to a potato, lemon juice can also be used to remove stains naturally. Rub the lemon on the stains and let sit for about 10 minutes. The lemon juice penetrates deeply and draws out the tar stains, however like many chemical produces it does not over dry the skin.
Dissolve a caplet of aspirin into a cup of hot water and soak your fingers in for about 15 minutes and it should help to lift the stain. one of aspirin's main ingredients, salicylic acid, helps lift the stain from your skin naturally. This method can also be done by creating a paste from aspirin and water for tougher stains. Aspirin solution will also help remove tobacco stains from clothing and walls.
For the tougher stains from years and years of smoking and ignoring the tar stains, you can gently massage the affected areas before and are with a pumice stone to scrub the stains from the skin. If you have to use the pumice stone after, I recommend repeating whichever treatment you were using for better results. Some have tried to remove stains by just scrubbing them off with a pumice stone, however this will leave your skin sore if done too vigorously and can result in calluses. Though the pumice stone will be useful if you, like me, had tobacco stains in already formed calluses.
People treat bleach like it is sulfuric acid. If bleach accidentally gets on your skin, it is not going to burn your to the bone straight away. Bleach is a helpful tool in removing tobacco stains from fingers. Undiluted pure bleach will cause chemical burns, so it is best to liberally dilute it before soaking your fingers. Add a capful of bleach to approximately two cups of water and let your fingers soak for five minutes.
Be sure to wash hands thoroughly after soaking to remove any excess bleach and bleach smell. Using bleach is one method that can dry your hands out, so If that is something that will bother you, but sure to apply lotion.
Treating Nicotine Stains on Teeth
Removing nicotine stains from teeth is a lot like removing any other discolorations that life presents your teeth. The best advice to keeping a white smile while still smoking it to smoke before brushing your teeth and try to wait at least an hour after brushing. If you brush your teeth daily, nicotine stains should keep themselves at bay.
Many heavy smokers are absolutely manic about smoking. They'll smoke before brushing their teeth and immediately after. Doing this really makes brushing your teeth to keep them white a moot point. To combat this, invest in an overnight whitening product. This will help counteract heavy smoking as you cannot smoke while you are sleeping.
Baking Soda and Peroxide
If you find yourself needing to do some spot treatment on some stains, baking soda and peroxide is the poor man's stain remover. A lot of stain removing products are essentially just baking soda and peroxide, so why spend the extra money? Mix the two together to form a thick paste and brush it on the stained areas of the teeth. You can also use this mixture to replace your usual toothpaste. You will not get that minty breath, but it will strongly help remove the stains on your teeth each day and keep new ones from forming.
I do have a warning for this method though, many people's mouths are excessively sensitive to peroxide so if the mixture burns, you will have to try another method. Once in awhile is alright if it burns your mouth, but daily use will be excruciating.
Like I previously said, what it all comes down to is good oral hygiene to treat and prevent tobacco stains on teeth. If tobacco has already taken its toll and you want to change it, today is a good day to start. use a whitening toothpaste daily and it will help fight stain build up. This also encompasses yearly visits to the dentist for teeth cleaning. If you are a smoker or have recently quit and want to get your smile whiter, start with a solid teeth cleaning at the dentist. That should help treat some of the deeper stains.
After the initial teeth cleaning, brush and even floss daily and use a whitening product, be it whitening strips or the baking soda and peroxide mixture, one a week at least. I found that after a about two months, my nicotine stains were gone and my teeth were whiter than they were when I was a child.
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