Does Charcoal Work as a Whitening Agent?

Activated charcoal has made its appearances in beauty regimens and de-tox diets all over the world, but recently many people have experimented with activated charcoal as a whitening agent in toothpastes and mouth rinses. What do our dentists say about whitening with charcoal? Find out here.
What the Claims Say
People believe that activated charcoal can be a powerful whitening agent because of the microscopic nooks that supposedly absorb the stains that cause a less-than-luminous smile, releasing them in your next bowel movement and brightening your smile almost instantaneously.
What You Can Expect
The first problem with relying on a charcoal whitening paste is that the microscopic pores in activated charcoal can only remove surface stains–for a truly whiter smile you need a flouride-based whitening regimen. You may see results from using a charcoal whitening paste but they will be limited to removing simple discoloration from the foods you ate today.
Abrasive Charcoal… a Good Idea?
The second problem with brushing your teeth with charcoal is the abrasiveness of the charcoal. Because the hard shell that protects the soft core of your teeth, your enamel, is fairly brittle and easy to chip, scrape, or diminish, you might as well rub your teeth with sand paper. Not only can the abrasiveness of charcoal harm the strength of your enamel (increasing your chances of experiencing cavities and sensitivity) but relying on charcoal as a whitening agent and a toothpaste will cause you to avoid using flouridated whiteners and toothpaste. When you don’t get a steady dose of flouride through toothpaste, your teeth and the strength of your enamel will suffer.
The Verdict
Save your time and money by avoiding the charcoal whitening trend. Over the counter whitening toothpastes are 100% safe and reliable and work just as well. If you are looking for a stronger whitening agent, talk to your dentist about professional whitening solutions.
Dr. Rehrer, a dentist in Mapleton, provides general, cosmetic , and restorative dental solutions to his patients in Utah County. If you are looking for a great family dentist near me, call Dr. Bender’s office at (801) 396-2944.

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