A popular teeth whitening trend in 2018 are new charcoal toothpastes that have been appearing in the marketplace. Many online influencers will boast and brag about how effective activated charcoal is for maintaining a bright, white, smile. Many claim it’s a better option than the traditional peroxide-based whitening strips. We’re told that charcoal removes stains caused by food, coffee and tea, and red wine, but does it really work?
Charcoal can indeed remove toxins from your body due to its ability to absorb dirt and impurities. But brushing with charcoal can have some unintended negative side-effects:
- Because of its abrasiveness, charcoal pastes should not be used too often, no more than once a month.
- Used to often, the abrasiveness can cause enamel to erode, which will never come back.
- Loss of your enamel can increase susceptibility to dental decay and cause more sensitivity
- If you decide you do want to try charcoal toothpaste, chose the extra fine type since it’s less harsh on your teeth.
- It’s true, over time, your pearly whites, eventually turn more yellow because your enamel is thinning and more of your inner dentin, which is darker, starts to show through.
- Everyone’s mouth is different, so you should speak to a dental professional before using charcoal
Currently, there are no studies that show charcoal products are beneficial for oral health. The American Dental Association has NOT given charcoal brushing its seal of approval, which should speak volumes in itself.
Instead of turning to a potentially harming toothpaste, ask your dentist for take-home trays, try store-bought white strips, use a whitening toothpaste, and of course, make sure to get regular cleanings!