Does Activated Charcoal Actually Whiten Teeth?

Does Activated Charcoal Actually Whiten Teeth?

Team Charcoal

Many popular teeth whitening products contain activated charcoal. Companies market the additive as a way to whiten teeth naturally. However, dentists caution against using activated charcoal on teeth.

Activated charcoal may make teeth look whiter at first. Repeated use of activated charcoal products will remove your natural tooth enamel, leaving your teeth yellow and unprotected.

How Activated Charcoal Damages Teeth

Natural tooth enamel is the strongest substance in the body. Healthy enamel is harder than bone. It protects the vulnerable dentin and pulp from damage caused by tooth decay.

Activated charcoal is a gritty abrasive. The large particles scrub away the enamel, with the effect growing worse over time. Patches of unprotected dentin grow. The teeth quickly become discolored since dentin is yellow compared to enamel.

Without a solid enamel coating, your teeth will be prone to decay. You may be more likely to break or chip teeth exposed to external force.

How Professional Teeth Whitening Works

Professional teeth whitening uses hydrogen peroxide or carbamide peroxide gel. These chemicals whiten teeth by breaking up stains accumulated over the years.

The treatment starts with shielding your gums from irritation. Next, the dentist applies the bleaching gel. The gel reaches deep into the tooth, addressing stains below the surface. The dentist carefully rinses the product away. They may repeat the procedure a few times during one whitening session.

After whitening teeth, the dentist will apply a fluoride gel to strengthen the teeth and reduce sensitivity.

How to Keep Your Teeth Looking Bright

Many patients want to know how to keep their teeth white naturally. The most important step is to visit the dentist every six months or as recommended. A professional cleaning removes stains and keeps your teeth in good health.

Be cautious with highly pigmented foods and beverages like coffee, tea, and red wine. If you have these foods or beverages, brush your teeth as soon as possible afterward to avoid stains.

Frequently Asked Questions About Teeth Whitening

Can I safely use over-the-counter whitening products with peroxide?

Over-the-counter strips and toothpaste containing peroxide are less damaging than activated charcoal. However, they are slow compared to professional whitening. If you add up the money you spend on tooth whitening products to reach the same shade, you may find that strips cost nearly as much as one professional whitening treatment.

Does professional whitening damage tooth enamel?

Professional whitening does not damage enamel. You can receive it safely without worrying it will cause problems later on. It may cause minor tooth sensitivity for a few days after treatment, but this should pass quickly. If you have susceptible teeth, be sure you tell your dentist.

Call Paramount Dental Arts

If you feel unhappy with the brightness of your teeth, don't reach for an over-the-counter activated charcoal product. Call us at 973-777-1772 to schedule a safe, quick, and easy teeth whitening appointment today.