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Thinking of using charcoal to whiten your child’s teeth or remove tooth stains? More and more people are trying this trend, believing that charcoal could absorb toxins, bacteria and even stains on the teeth. Believers of activated charcoal for teeth whitening brush their teeth using this material for 3 to 5 minutes and then claiming she had seemingly whiter teeth.

Warning Against Charcoal Whiteners

Your teeth could be stained or discoloured due to a number of factors, from the food you eat to poor dental hygiene. Say for instance, if you eat blueberry, your teeth could be stained blue. Those are the kind of stains that they believe if you brush with charcoal, you can clean off.

However, medical professionals warn against the use of do-it-yourself tooth whitening that may lead to deterioration of tooth enamel and tooth erosion. Activated charcoal can cause a potential damage due to its grainy substance. Dentists fear that people will use charcoal often, causing too much erosion on the tooth enamel. What’s worse is that it can eventually lead to deeper erosion as the material works into the deeper layer of the tooth which is the dentin.

Unlike skin or hair, dentin does not heal itself or grow back. Due to the abrasiveness of charcoal, it could even leave teeth stained, blotchy and prone to erosion and deterioration later on. Though some users find charcoal as effective for whitening, the long-term effect of teeth whitening is still unknown.

In addition, there is no solid evidence that activated charcoal does any benefit to your teeth. Activated charcoal should not replace daily tooth brushing and flossing as well as regular dental visits. These two ways – brushing and flossing – are necessary to remove plaque. The toothpaste you are using provides fluoride for the teeth. From a dentist’s perspective, it is concerning that people use products without fluoride.

How About Charcoal Toothpaste?

There’s no scientific proof that activated charcoal truly works. In fact, there are far better options that do actually work. If you desire a pearly white smile, dentists recommend using traditional toothpaste to erase surface stain or common treatment procedures for deeper stains.

Don’t forget, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Still, any conventional whitening toothpastes or visiting a dentist are advised as they are safer. Take note that there are numerous products that can be very abrasive.

Mint Kids Dentistry suggests to ask you dentist and calculate the risk before you try any latest trend. For now, if you are searching for a product to whiten your teeth for an upcoming event or celebration, whitening toothpastes, over-the-counter whitening strips are gentler and won’t cause any harm on your teeth.