Generations Dental Care Blog

Activated Charcoal Teeth Whitening: Does It Work & Is It Safe?

January 28, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — generations @ 10:30 pm
powdered activated charcoal on toothbrush

Using activated charcoal is the newest big trend on the health and beauty scene. Kim Kardashian, Shailene Woodley, and Gwyneth Paltrow are just a few of the celebrities who promote this black, grainy paste for whiter teeth. But is this viral whitening treatment really effective and safe to use? Read on as your cosmetic dentist explains the benefits as well as the drawbacks of using activated charcoal on your teeth and how you can get the brighter smile you’ve always wanted.

Does Activated Charcoal Actually Work?

A quick search on YouTube, Instagram, or Google can give you thousands of results for people who rave about the effectiveness of activated charcoal teeth whitening. Thanks to its abrasive nature and ability to absorb toxins, activated charcoal can scrub away at the top layers of your enamel to remove unsightly surface stains. It also acts as a polish to smooth out and buff any rough patches on your teeth, leaving them slick and shiny. While it can help you clean away some discoloration, there are important drawbacks to consider.

Is Activated Charcoal A Safe Teeth Whitening Treatment?

Activated charcoal teeth whitening treatments haven’t earned the American Dental Association Seal of Approval, and dental experts warn that there are more downsides than benefits to this viral trend, including:

  • Activated charcoal doesn’t actually whiten teeth. It can only remove stains in the first few layers of your enamel, leaving deeper, more stubborn discoloration and natural yellowing due to age intact. Ironically, activated charcoal may end up darkening your teeth, since scrubbing away at the enamel will reveal the layer of grayish dentin underneath.
  • It can cause permanent damage. Enamel can’t repair itself after it’s been worn down. Scratching away at it with an abrasive material like activated charcoal will weaken your teeth, causing them to become sensitive and susceptible to chips, cracks, and fractures.
  • Many options don’t include fluoride. The fluoride in regular toothpaste binds to enamel to make it even stronger than before, which helps it fight off tooth decay. Since many activated charcoal whitening products don’t contain any fluoride, you’re much more likely to develop cavities by using them instead of a fluoridated toothpaste.

All in all, activated charcoal teeth whitening is a short-term solution that can cause major long-term damage.

What’s the Best Way to Get A Brighter Smile?

If you want to whiten your teeth without harming them, there’s no one better to talk to than your cosmetic dentist. They are highly trained to safely and comfortably administer professional-grade whitening agents that seep into the layers of your enamel. With an in-office whitening treatment, you can start to enjoy a smile that’s up to eight shades whiter after a single quick appointment. Or, if you prefer to whiten your teeth from the comfort of your own home, your dentist can provide you with a customized at-home teeth whitening kit. Both options are extremely safe and clean your enamel without damaging it. They’re also designed to remove surface discoloration as well as deep stains from tobacco, food, and aging that neither activated charcoal nor other over-the-counter whitening products can reach.

Don’t put your teeth at risk by falling for the hype of activated charcoal teeth whitening. A professional treatment from your cosmetic dentist is the safest, easiest, quickest way to get a beautifully dazzling smile.

About the Practice

At Generations Dental Care, we want to help you achieve a healthy smile that you can’t wait to show off. Whether you need a simple checkup, more extensive dental work, or help getting the smile of your dreams, our skilled team of in-house specialists has the knowledge and experience you need. If you’d like to know more about in-office or at-home teeth whitening treatments, feel free to contact us at our website or (603) 225-6331.

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