Charcoal seems to be the big deal these days – everywhere that you look you find a few charcoal products.
Charcoal toothpastes have been around for a while, but they have gained popularity in the last few years – especially in Australia, which is partly due to heavy marketing and promises.
Some of these toothpastes claim that they whiten and clean your teeth better than conventional toothpastes.
So, is charcoal toothpaste the next big deal?
Below are some facts about charcoal toothpaste.
- The main ingredient used in these toothpastes is activated charcoal, which is very porous and acts like an absorbing filter (similar to what is used in water purification). This effect can absorb some stains that are present on a tooth’s enamel surface: however, it doesn’t remove deeper stains or whiten teeth.
- The charcoal toothpaste can be very abrasive and, if used regularly, may wear the enamel off. This effect is even worse if it is used on the exposed root surfaces, which can lead to teeth sensitivity.
- Charcoal particles can actually cause black staining if they reach slight gaps next to restorations or small cracks in teeth.
- Most of these toothpastes lack the fluoride ingredient, which is exceptionally effective against tooth decay and makes your teeth more resistant against decay.
- There is some current research about the effect of charcoal interaction with existing tooth restoration materials, such as composite resins and porcelain, and its possible adverse effects.
So, for now and until more research is available, it is best to use your normal fluoridated toothpaste and try to use a soft toothbrush to protect your smile as much as possible. If your teeth discoloration is concerning you, it is best to have a consultation with your dentist to know what options are available to help you.
Thanks for reading,
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