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What has Charcoal got to do with Teeth Whitening?

When you’re interested in getting a brighter, whiter smile where do you turn? If your teeth are dull and stained, you probably go to the drug store and pick up a whitening toothpaste or start researching laser teeth whitening. However, you might not know that there are actually other options out there. One of these options is activated charcoal. If you make a paste out of activated charcoal, you can brush it on your teeth to remove surface stains and brighten your teeth. Read on to find out just what activated charcoal is, and how you can use it to whiten your smile.

What Is Activated Charcoal?

When you hear the word charcoal, the first the that might come to mind is getting coal in your stocking for Christmas if you’ve been bad. The black lump of coal that you are envisioning isn’t exactly what you’ll be using to whiten your teeth. Bustle explains what activated charcoal really is, “Activated charcoal, also referred to as activated carbon, is not the stuff you use in your backyard grill. Activated charcoal is charcoal that has been “activated” to increase it’s absorptive properties, and in addition to naturally absorbing chemicals and toxins from the body, activated charcoal is a great holistic alternative to various health and beauty products (such as face masks and teeth whiteners).” Lots of people use activated charcoal for many different reasons. If you do a bit of research, you will see that many households keep it on hand to combat accidental ingestion of harmful substances (of course in addition to seeking proper medical treatment).

How did people discover that charcoal could be used to whiten teeth? Going back through the ages, there is a long precedent for using charcoal as part of a dental care routine. Many of our ancestors used twigs and charcoal to keep their teeth clean. While these people were not necessarily using the charcoal to whiten their teeth, they likely stumbled upon that unintended benefit while using the charcoal on their teeth for other reasons. So it really isn’t so strange that the activated charcoal trend started taking off when people realized that it was capable of whitening teeth.

Can Activated Charcoal Really Whiten Teeth?


It might seem counterintuitive to put a messy black substance on your teeth to remove stains. You might think that activated charcoal would just leave stains on your teeth instead of removing them. It’s true that while you are brushing with the charcoal, it will probably look like you are doing more harm than good. However, activated charcoal has absorbent properties that can help lift the stains from your teeth. Now that you know what it is and how it works, let’s discuss how you can use it at home to remove the stains on your teeth.

How to Use Activated Charcoal



If this method sounds like something that you want to try, then you’ll need to get activated charcoal. Luckily, there are a lot of places that sell it to consumers, including many popular online outlets. Once you get activated charcoal, you will need to make it into a paste so that you can brush it on your teeth. 1st Family Dental gives us the formula for creating an activated charcoal toothpaste to whiten your teeth, “The recipe for creating activated charcoal toothpaste is very simple – just empty a capsule of activated charcoal onto your toothbrush, add a little water, and brush.  When you’re done brushing, rinse your mouth very well.” It is recommended that you leave the paste on your teeth for about 3 minutes before rinsing it away. Remember to rinse thoroughly to get rid of all of the black staining the charcoal will leave on your teeth.

Be warned, the paste is pretty messy, so you are going to need to be careful not to get it everywhere. Also, you might want to pick up a designated toothbrush for your charcoal paste so you don’t get the residue on your teeth every time you brush. If you do want to take an easier route you could try some teeth whitening strips that are infused with charcoal to save on some of the mess.

So there you have it! Activated charcoal might just be the answer to removing the stains on your teeth without using whitening chemicals or spending time and money in a dentist’s chair getting a professional whitening treatment. It’s also a great way to scare the post man if he knocks on your door mid charcoal treatment.