The other day I had lunch with an older friend of mine. She is mid-fifties – vivacious and animated – but I’ll be damned if she didn’t suddenly look much younger to me. I’d never seen her looking that good. A life-time of sun, cigarettes and cocktails had taken their toll. I mused it must be her energy and lithe, athletic figure which made her seem so – effervescent. But she had always been slim and vivacious. Then, it struck me. It was her teeth! They were a sparkling white. Cautiously, I inquired. Readily, she confirmed my suspicions. But what really surprised me was how she’d polished ‘em up. She claimed it cost her only 5 CHF ($5.59).
Getting your teeth whitened in NYC is expensive. Even if you had the customized tooth tray made by your dentist (like me) the whitener is pricey. And tooth whitening boutiques are usually around $500 a pop. Now, put yourself in Geneva, Switzerland and multiply any service you get in NYC by three and you have the Swiss price – I’m not kidding.
However, my friend told me she had had a toothache and went to the pharmacy. They told her to brush and then rinse with hydrogen peroxide (eau oxygenee here) three times a day. Within two days she had removed five years of coffee/tea/wine/cigarette etc stains. Oh – and, her tooth infection cleared up overnight.
Fascinated, I left the lunch and headed to the nearest pharmacy to purchase my bottle of eau oxygenee. I had long run out of my magical chemical whitener and no longer have U.S. dental insurance. My fangs had entered the unnatural (and never before-experienced) dentist-free zone for the past three years. Bi-annual cleanings and dental check-ups were a thing of the past – part of my employed existence – an increasingly hazy memory. Single-mom life on a budget insists on certain economies.
Two days later my teeth can challenge Tom Cruise’s in a sparkle-fest. Or even Paris Hilton’s. I temporarily blind my child and my friends when I smile at them. And it only cost me 5 CHF – though (to be whiny) I am sure the bottle you buy in the U.S. for $5.59 is about 20x the tiny perfume sample offered by the oh-so-stingy-Swiss (ever ready to take a huge chunk of your money while offering very little in return). (Apologies to my few Swiss pals…)
Some research produced the following fascinating information on 28 uses for hydrogen peroxide (HP henceforth). But first – what exactly is HP?
HP is the only germicidal agent composed only of water and oxygen. Like ozone, it kills disease organisms by oxidation! Hydrogen peroxide is considered the worlds’ safest all natural effective sanitizer. It kills microorganisms by oxidizing them, which can be best described as a controlled burning process. When Hydrogen peroxide reacts with organic material it breaks down into oxygen and water.
1. Whiten Clothes – An Alternative to Beach
Add a cup of Peroxide to white clothes in your laundry to whiten them. Peroxide is great to get rid of blood stains on clothes and carpets. If there is blood on clothing, just pour directly on the spot, let it sit for about a minute, then rub and rinse with cold water. Repeat if necessary. (HP has worked well for the numerous stains produced by my experimental child…)
Your body makes HP to fight infection which must be present for our immune system to function correctly. White blood cells are known as Leukocytes. A sub-class of Leukocytes called Neutrophils produce hydrogen peroxide as the first line of defense against toxins, parasites, bacteria, viruses and yeast.
3. Rejuvenating Detoxifying Bath
Use about 2 quarts 3% HP to a tub of warm water. Soak at least 1/2 hour, adding hot water as needed to maintain a comfortable water temperature.
4. Foot Fungus
To cure a foot fungus, simply spray a 50/50 mixture of Hydrogen peroxide and water on them (especially the toes) every night and let dry.
Add 2 capfuls of 3% HP in warm distilled water once to twice a week to remove even chronic yeast infections.
6. Colonic or Enema
For a colonic, add 1 cup (8 ozs.) 3% H202 to 5 gallons warm water. (Do not exceed this amount) For an enema, add 1 tablespoon of 3% H202 to a quart of warm distilled water.
Soak any infections or cuts in 3% for five to ten minutes several times a day. Even gangrene that would not heal with any medicine has been healed by soaking in Hydrogen peroxide. Put half a bottle of hydrogen peroxide in your bath to help rid boils, fungus or other skin infections.
8. Bird Mites Infections
Patients infected by tiny mites report that hydrogen peroxide effectively kills the mites on their skins. They spray it on their skin a couple of times (with a few minutes in between the applications) with amazing results.
9. Sinus Infections
A tablespoon of 3% HP added to 1 cup of non-chlorinated water can be used as a nasal spray. Depending on the degree of sinus involvement, one will have to adjust the amount of peroxide used.
10. Wound Care
3% H2O2 is used medically for cleaning wounds, removing dead tissue, and as an oral debriding agent. Peroxide stops slow (small vessel) wound bleeding/oozing, as well.
Some sources recommend soaking infections or cuts for five to ten minutes several times a day. However, washing and rinsing action is sufficient. You shouldn’t leave the solution on open tissue for extended periods of time as, like many oxidative antiseptics, Hydrogen peroxide causes mild damage to tissue in open wounds. Therefore it is important to use with caution.
Mouthwash / Tooth Care
Healing Properties: Take one capful (the little white cap that comes with the bottle) and hold in your mouth for 10 minutes daily, then spit it out. You will not have canker sores and your teeth will be whiter. If you have a terrible toothache and cannot get to a dentist right away, put a capful of 3% HP into your mouth and hold it for 10 minutes several times a day. The pain will lessen greatly.
Many people don’t realize that hydrogen peroxide makes a very effective and inexpensive mouthwash. Use 3% H202 – add a dash of liquid chlorophyll for flavoring if desired.
Use baking soda and add enough 3% H202 to make a paste.
Or, just dip your brush in 3% H202 and brush. Soak your toothbrush in Hydrogen peroxide to keep them free of germs.
14. Tooth Ache
Hydrogen peroxide is not a pain killer; however, as an anti-viral, antibacterial and anti-fungal agent, it is effective at treating the pathogen that is causing the infection. The following is from my own personal experience: My dentist wanted to give me a root canal some time ago as one tooth was inflamed and, in her opinion, would die. I felt some discomfort but told her that I would give it chance to heal. I rinsed with hydrogen peroxide (several times a day) as well as coconut oil (once a day). The discomfort went away and I have had no further problems with the tooth.
15. Tooth Whitening
Having used 3% HP as a mouth wash for some time ago, I am thrilled to note that my teeth have been beautifully and effortlessly whitened. I used to pay so much for professional whitening, those silly strips and uncomfortable trays. Live and learn.
NOTE: Do not swallow any peroxide. When the peroxide rinse is done, be sure to rinse out your mouth with water.
16. Hair Lightening
Peroxide is a bleaching agent and is used for lightened hair. Dilute 3% HP with water (50 / 50) and spray the solution on your wet hair after a shower and comb it through. You will not have the peroxide burnt blonde hair like the hair dye packages, but more natural highlights if your hair is a light brown, faddish, or dirty blonde. It also lightens gradually so it’s not a drastic change.
17. Contact Lenses
Hydrogen peroxide is used as a disinfectant in CIBA Vision’s Clear Care no rub contact lens cleaning solution, due to its ability to break down the proteins that build up on the lens from the eye’s immune response, resulting in increased comfort for those with sensitive eyes.
Sanitizing / Disinfectant / Cleaning
18. Straight or Diluted Hydrogen Perioxide
Clean your counters and table tops with HP to kill germs and leave a fresh smell. Simply put a little on your dishrag when you wipe, or spray it on the counters. Use hydrogen peroxide to clean glass and mirrors with no smearing.
Keep a spray bottle of 3% (straight) to disinfect the interior of the refrigerator and kids’ school lunch boxes.
19. In the Dishwasher
Add 2 oz. of 3% HP to your regular washing formula.
Fill a spray bottle with a 50/50 mixture of 3% Hydrogen peroxide and water and keep it in every bathroom to disinfect without harming your septic system like bleach or most other disinfectants will. After rinsing off your wooden cutting board, pour or spray hydrogen peroxide (and then vinegar) on it to kill salmonella and other bacteria.
I use peroxide to clean my mirrors with, there is no smearing.
Combination of vinegar and hydrogen peroxide make a cheap, effective and non-toxic disinfectant agent and is said to be more effective at killing pathogens than bleach. As it is non-toxic, you can use it to disinfect fruits and vegetables, as well as pet toys, equipment and cages. In tests run at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, pairing Vinegar and Hydrogen Peroxide mists, kills virtually all Salmonella, Shigella, or E. coli bacteria on heavily contaminated food and surfaces.
You need TWO spray bottles. DO NOT MIX the solutions together. Put straight vinegar in one and straight Hydrogen peroxide in the other spray bottle.
NOTE: Light destroys peroxide rather quickly. It’s best to leave it in its original bottle and screw in a spray head. DO NOT DILUTE THEM.
Remember for any sanitizer to work properly, the surface has to be clean before you use it.
When you want to sanitize a surface (vegetables, cutting board, counters, sink, cages, toys. toilets, floors, etc.), spray one (it doesn’t matter which one you use first) on the surface, then you spray on the other. When they mix, for a brief time the chemical action of the two make a very powerful sanitizer. You can rinse off the surface afterwards, if you want, but the result is non-toxic.
Fortunately it is cheap. BTW, we use it in the bathroom to sanitize the counters, toilets, floors, etc.
Clean with Hydrogen peroxide when your house becomes a bio-hazard after its invaded by toxic mold, such as those with water damage.
Use 1 pint 3% HP to 1 gallon of water.
22. Laundry / Stain Removing
3% Hydrogen peroxide is the best stain lifter if used fairly soon – although blood stains as old as 2 days have been successfully lifted with Hydrogen Peroxide. Although it will bleach or discolor many fabrics. If a little peroxide is poured onto the stain it will bubble up in the area of the blood. After a few minutes the excess liquid can be wiped up with a cloth or paper towel and the stain will be gone.
3% H2O2 must be applied to clothing before blood stains can be accidentally “set” with heated water. Cold water and soap are then used to remove the peroxide treated blood.
You can also add a cup of hydrogen peroxide instead of bleach to a load of whites in your laundry to whiten them. If there is blood on clothing, pour directly on the soiled spot. Let it sit for a minute, then rub it and rinse with cold water. Repeat if necessary.
Peroxide is a perfect alternate solution to keep those clothes white. Also, when chlorinating clothes, they tend to wear out faster – peroxide won’t do that.
24. Vegetable Soak
Use as a vegetable wash or soak to kill bacteria and neutralize chemicals. Add 1/4 cup 3% H202 to a full sink of cold water. Soak light skinned (light lettuce) 20 minutes, thicker skinned (like cucumbers) 30 minutes. Drain, dry and refrigerate. Prolongs freshness.
If time is a problem, spray vegetables (and fruits) with a solution of 3%. Let stand for a few minutes, rinse and dry.
25. Meat Sanitizing
You can also use it to rinse off your meat before cooking.
26. Leftover tossed salad
Spray with a solution of 1/2 cup water and 1 Tbsp. 5%. Drain, cover and refrigerate.
Place meat, fish or poultry in a casserole (avoid using aluminium pans). Cover with a dilute solution of equal parts of water and 3% H202. Place loosely covered in refrigerator for 1/2 hour. Rinse and cook.
28. Sprouting Seeds
Add 1 ounce 3% HP to 1 pint of water and soak the seeds overnight. Add the same amount of hydrogen peroxide each time you rinse the seeds.
Grades of Hydrogen Peroxide
A) 3.5% Pharmaceutical Grade: This is the grade sold at your local drugstore or supermarket. This product is not recommended for internal use. It contains an assortment of stabilizers which shouldn’t be ingested. Various stabilizers include: acetanilide, phenol, sodium stanate and tertrasodium phosphate.
B) 6% Beautician Grade: This is used in beauty shops to color hair and is not recommended for internal use.
C) 30% Reagent Grade: This is used for various scientific experimentation and also contains stabilizers. It is also not for internal use.
D) 30% to 32% Electronic Grade: This is used to clean electronic parts and not for internal use.
E) 35% Technical Grade: This is a more concentrated product than the Reagent Grade and differs slightly in that phosphorus is added to help neutralize any chlorine from the water used to dilute it.
F) 35% Food Grade: This is used in the production of foods like cheese, eggs, and whey-containing products. It is also sprayed on the foil lining of aseptic packages containing fruit juices and milk products. THIS IS THE ONLY GRADE RECOMMENDED FOR INTERNAL USE.
G) 90%: This is used as an oxygen source for rocket fuel.
Only 35% Food Grade hydrogen peroxide is recommended for internal use. At this concentration, however, hydrogen peroxide is a very strong oxidizer and if not diluted, it can be extremely dangerous or even fatal. Any concentrations over 10% can cause neurological reactions and damage to the upper gastrointestinal tract. There have been two known fatalities in children who ingested 27% and 40% concentrations of H202. Another reports tells of a 26 month old female who swallowed one mouthful of 35% H202. She immediately began vomiting, followed by fainting and respiratory arrest. Fortunately, she was under emergency room care and although she experienced erosion and bleeding of the stomach and esophagus, she survived the incident. When she was re-examined 12 days later, the areas involved had healed (J Toxicol Clin Toxicol 90;28(1):95-100).
35% Food Grade H202 must be….
1. Handled carefully (direct contact will burn the skin- immediate flushing with water is recommended).
2. Diluted properly before use.
3. Stored safely and properly (after making a dilution the remainder should be stored tightly sealed in the freezer).
One of the most convenient methods of dispensing 35% H202 is from a small glass eye dropper bottle. These can be purchased at your local drugstore. Fill this with the 35% H202 and store the larger container in the freezer compartment of your refrigerator until more is needed. Store the eye dropper bottle in the refrigerator. The drops are mixed with either 6 to 8 ounces of distilled water, juice, aloe vera juice or gel.
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