August 25, 2016
When you log on to sites like Pinterest and YouTube these days, you are bombarded with “home remedies” and “DIY dentistry”. Do any of these alternative solutions actually work?
Today, we’re looking into one of the newer trends we’ve seen online – using activated charcoal to whiten your teeth — to see if there is any merit to their claims.
These DIYers claim that brushing with activated charcoal is an all-natural way to remove surface stains caused by coffee, tea or red wine without bleach or abrasives. All you have to do is brush with activated charcoal and you’ll receive fluorescent white teeth after as few as one use.
Activated charcoal is a purifying agent that absorbs contaminants. This chalky substance has been used in items like heavy-duty air filters and to absorb accidental ingestion of poisonous materials (things like bleach and drugs).
Activated charcoal’s enormous surface area is covered with hundreds of nooks and crannies that draw in and trap toxic substances in your gut like a sponge. This absorption reduces the amount of harmful substances being absorbed by the body by 47%.
The thought process is if activated charcoal can remove toxins from our body and skin, shouldn’t it be able to remove those unsightly stains from your teeth?
According to Kim Harms, DDS, a spokesperson for the American Dental Association, “There’s no evidence at all that activated charcoal does any good for your teeth,”. She goes on to say that activated charcoal may actually be HURTING your teeth! “Like any abrasive, we’re worried about the effects on the gums and enamel on the teeth. We don’t know about the safety and effectiveness of it,” she says.
Bummer. If you’d still like to brighten those pearly whites, please visit our office in Schaumburg, IL for a consultation. Dr. Jig Patel will able to point you in the right direction in terms of what products or services you need to achieve your smile goals.