Charcoal Toothpaste for Teeth Whitening: The Pros and Cons

Charcoal Toothpaste for Teeth Whitening: The Pros and Cons
Charcoal is currently a big trend in the world of wellness and cosmetics. It is an ingredient found in face masks, scrubs, and some people also swear by it for whitening their teeth.  Activated charcoal, the type used in beauty products and toothpaste, is a fine grain powder made from wood, coconut shells, and other natural substances that are oxidized under extreme heat.


There are many charcoal toothpaste products available in most drugstores and online. It’s highly absorbent and used medically to remove and absorb toxins. But the question here is, does it really work for teeth whitening?

Charcoal Toothpaste for Whitening: Does it Work?

Activated charcoal in toothpaste may help remove surface stains on your teeth. It is mildly abrasive and is also able to absorb surface stains to some degree. However, there is no evidence that it has any effect on stains below a tooth’s enamel, or that it has a natural whitening effect.


In order to whiten teeth, a product needs to work on stains on the surface, as well as stains that are those below the enamel.


While activated charcoal does have some proven benefits, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to include teeth whitening as one of them.


Is Charcoal Toothpaste Safe? 

Charcoal toothpaste is too abrasive for everyday use as it can damage your enamel. This may make your teeth look more yellow by exposing the calcified yellow tissue known as dentin. It can also make your teeth more sensitive.


Most charcoal toothpaste brands don’t contain fluoride. Fluoride helps keep your tooth enamel strong, which helps to protect your teeth against cavities and decay. 


Charcoal particles could accumulate in the cracks and crevices of older teeth, which may cause staining on some teeth.


It’s not yet known how charcoal affects the materials used to make veneers, bridges, crowns, and white fillings. Particles of charcoal could build up between them, leaving a black or gray outline.


What Are the Pros of Charcoal Toothpaste? 

It may help remove surface stains on the teeth.
It may improve bad breath.
It may help prevent staining when used occasionally after a professional cleaning.

What Are the Cons of Charcoal Toothpaste? 

It’s abrasive and may damage tooth enamel and make teeth appear yellow.
It doesn’t remove stains below the enamel.
Everyday use could cause tooth sensitivity.
Most brands don’t contain fluoride, which helps prevent cavities and tooth decay.
It could stain older teeth and dental restorations, like veneers, bridges, crowns, and white fillings.

Although charcoal toothpaste is getting a lot of attention, it’s not necessarily more effective than other toothpastes and at-home whitening products on the market today. It may help remove surface stains, but the long-term use of this product is largely unknown. Speak to your dentist about the best whitening option for you.

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