Making smart choices isn’t always as simple as black and white. And making the right choices about your dental health and health in general can seem complicated at times. However, making a choice about whitening your teeth with charcoal products is actually quite simple: don’t.
Of course, charcoal toothpaste, charcoal polish, and charcoal teeth-whitening products seem to be all the rage these days. And that should tell you something. As most of us know, if something seems too good to be true, well… it probably is. So here are a few simple facts to help you make smarter choices about using charcoal products for your teeth — and help you choose safe, effective alternatives instead.
Charcoal Products Are Not Approved by the ADA
First, as dentist Dr. Carangeloexplains, charcoal teeth-whitening products are not approved by the American Dental Association (ADA). And in quoting from a report from the ADA, Dr. Carangelo points out that “there is no evidence that dental products with charcoal are safe or effective for your teeth,” (Journal of the American Dental Association, Sept. 2017).
Charcoal Can Make Your Teeth Yellow
Second, consider how some things may work wonders for the moment but could lead to serious problems in the future. As Dr. Carangelo further explains, charcoal is an abrasive. And even in powder form, charcoal is still soot, it’s still rough, and it can still wear away your tooth enamel. Enamel is the outer part of your teeth — the part we want to keep white and keep healthy for as long as possible.
However, instead of keeping your teeth whiter and brighter, scrubbing and brushing your teeth with an abrasive, such as charcoal, can wear away your enamel. And when enamel wears away, it exposes the layer underneath, called dentin. Dentin is the tissue that makes our teeth look more yellow. So, while some people on social media may seem all too happy with the results from using charcoal toothpaste, they may have worn down their tooth enamel and left their teeth more vulnerable, and more likely to become yellow-looking later on.
Avoid Charcoal: Choose Safe, Effective Teeth-Whitening Methods Instead
Lastly, if the lack of ADA approval, and the problems with abrasive teeth cleaners aren’t convincing enough, consider this: the damage that can be done to your teeth with toothpastes containing activated charcoal is irreversible. Once tooth enamel is gone, it’s gone. Even brushing your teeth too hard can cause enamel loss (so imagine what brushing your teeth too hard with abrasive charcoal will do). And oftentimes the only way to restore extensive tooth enamel loss, and regain a whiter, brighter smile is with caps, crowns, and veneers.
Fortunately, there are plenty of safe, proven, and effective teeth-whitening products and procedures available. And you’re in luck if you’re in Webster, or the greater Rochester area. Dr. Carangelo and the staff at BayRidge Dental Care can help you choose from several teeth cleaning and cosmetic dentistry procedures to help whiten your teeth, and help keep your teeth and gums healthy without the harmful effects of charcoal toothpastes and charcoal-based teeth cleaners.