Here’s the Lowdown on Charcoal Toothpaste
July 13, 2018 ABC Children's Dentistry
In a recent issue, the San Diego pediatric dentists at ABC Children’s Dentistry talked about the risks associated with using whitening strips on your child’s teeth. The overriding concern is to wait until your child is 18 before using whitening strip, so that your child’s tooth enamel is fully calcified.
In this issue, we’ll talk about a new trend in teeth whitening: charcoal toothpaste.
How does charcoal toothpaste whiten teeth?
The claims revolve around activated charcoal, which essentially is common charcoal heated with a gas to make it more porous. Supposedly, this helps the charcoal to snare harmful chemicals. That’s actually a good thing when used for the treatment of poisoning.
The claim about teeth whitening goes along the lines of activated charcoal toothpaste removing the toxins from your teeth and gums – which in turn is supposed to remove stains from your teeth, resulting in a whiter smile.
Does charcoal toothpaste actually whiten teeth?
Whether or not it actually works is an entirely different question. According to the American Dental Association, there’s simply no evidence as of yet to support the claims of effectiveness of charcoal toothpaste. Not a single study exists showing a correlation between charcoal toothpaste and whiter teeth.
In fact, there’s strong evidence that using abrasive materials like charcoal on your teeth can make them more yellow. That’s because rough ingredients like charcoal can wear down your tooth enamel, which is what you’re wanting to whiten. When the enamel is worn down, the next layer – dentin – is exposed, which can lead directly to strong tooth sensitivity issues.
What should I do to whiten my child’s teeth?
By far, the most effective way to whiten your own teeth and those of your child is a professional cleaning in your dentist’s office. It takes maybe an hour, and the results are immediate, compared to the one or two weeks needed for doing it at home with an over-the-counter product.
For safe teeth whitening with proven results, call the San Diego child dentistry experts at Children’s Dentistry.
Our customized approach will fit the unique individual dental needs of your child.