Many people are looking for the best ways and methods to whiten their teeth the DIY way. And one of the most trending ones through Internet and social Media is Activated Charcoal Teeth Whitening (Sometimes called activated carbon).
Before writing this article, I’ve made some researches about the most asked questions about the subject. So, I could answer them in a detailed way and also answer some other questions that are related to the topic. I’ve found that most people are asking the same obvious question:
How to use activated charcoal for teeth whitening purposes safely?
This is a question that I can answer in a paragraph or two. However, as I believe that teeth whitening is mostly about education and deep understanding. I feel the right thing to do is to write a thorough article that covers several aspects and information to provide the most value for people interested about this subject.
What is activated charcoal?
Activated charcoal is a fine black powder. It is mainly made from bone char, coconut shells, peat, petroleum coke, coal and olive pits.
It is not easy to differentiate between the activated charcoal and the regular one (used to fire up Moroccan Tagins and barbeques).
In fact, they both have many similarities regarding numerous characteristics. Yet, activated carbon is efficient for different kinds of medical treatments like toxin removal, anti-aging, high levels of cholesterol as well as many other medical uses.
It is a tasteless, odorless and highly absorbent substance. In addition, it is made from regular charcoal and activated after heating it up and reaching a temperature of 450 °C up to 900 °C or even more.
You can find activated charcoal in many different forms. Powder is the most popular one. In addition, pills, tablets, paste, granules, cubes and sponges are all available forms.
The 3 mains forms that you can buy for teeth whitening purposes are powder, paste and tablets.
Keep in mind that numerous alternative dental health products are opting for activated charcoal instead of fluoride. The latter may cause some harmful effects not only to your teeth but also to the body. Especially, when we are talking too much fluoride exposure.
How does Activated Charcoal whiten your Teeth?
It is very important to understand how activated charcoal whitens your teeth. This is the first step to be able to use it properly.
You probably think it’s weird that activated charcoal whitens teeth instead of staining them since it stains everything it touches. In fact, it stains everything but teeth!
Actually, pores coming from activated charcoal tend to bind with hard parts on teeth. In most cases, these rough parts are plaque and surface stains which are yellowing substances and the origin of teeth discoloration in general. Often these surface stains are caused by coffee, tea, sweets and even too much fluoride.
When the activated charcoal has been given a considerable amount of time to stick to your mouth and teeth. It can be just spitted out using warm water or even a regular mouthwash. The minerals will remove during the process majority if not totality of food residue, plaque and surface stains. Hence, you will notice your teeth whiter and brighter. This process will also help you removing toxins from your mouth which improves your oral health.
Another great thing about activated charcoal is its ability to help maintaining your oral pH in a healthy way.
In fact, if it is good it maintains it, otherwise it changes it to the right measure for a healthy mouth (around 8.2). Hence, your mouth will be a good environment for good bacteria. This will also help in the remineralizing process of your teeth.
Don’t forget to track you saliva pH frequently. This is a legit indicator of your oral health. You can check this good saliva pH tracker on Amazon.
Many Charcoal-based types of toothpaste are marketed as being able to kill microbes and also to absorb gases causing bad colors. I wouldn’t be surprised if that is true, however, this is yet to be scientifically proven.
Keep in mind, that activated charcoal teeth whitening doesn’t change teeth which are deeply stained or even naturally yellow. There are other measures to consider in these cases.
How safe is Activated Charcoal Teeth Whitening?
The first thing you would probably worry about is how safe ingesting the charcoal is? Actually, Ingesting activated charcoal doesn’t represent any risk and that’s totally safe. In fact, activated carbon has many medical uses including toxin removal. So, ingesting it would even be good in this case.
Furthermore, to this day, there have been no enough researches to know how gritty it is to hurt your enamel. That’s why, you should avoid or at least reduce scrubbing it on your teeth as safety measure.
However, there are couples of things you need to know about activated charcoal teeth whitening:
Its abrasiveness is something to be a little bit aware of in order to protect your enamel. Otherwise, you may damage it which will increase your teeth sensitivity. In fact, following an excessive use, activated charcoal could be wearing the enamel away. This would expose your dentin which is the soft yellowish layer under the enamel.
That’s why a proper use of this substance is crucial in order to avoid your teeth to be scratched.
In addition, if you have any serious cut, injury or abrasion you probably should not use it until you heal considerably.
Experts recommend to never opt for any teeth whitening substance that has an abrasion that exceeds 200 RDA (Relative Dentin Abrasivity). In fact:
- An abrasion from 0 to 80 is low.
- Abrasion from 80 to 100 is midrange.
- Abrasion from 100 to 150 mean highly abrasive.
- And if it is from 150 to 250 or even more it is simply dangerous and harmful for your teeth.
Keep in mind that activated carbon scores a range of 70 up to 90 RDA which is between low and midrange. Which is fine, yet you need to use it correctly.
If you are not completely sure, consulting a dentist to know whether you are completely eligible to activated charcoal teeth whitening is an option you may opt for.
Whiten your Teeth Using Activated Charcoal Safely
While browsing Internet you will find lot of different ways on how to whiten you teeth with activated charcoal. All these methods depend on the personal experience of the users which is normal. My main concern is how to do it properly and safely.
Honestly, I prefer to have stained teeth but strong, rather than white teeth which are weak and sensitive!
Let’s break down the step-by-step method:
- No need to clean your teeth or brush them before starting the process.
- Purchase activated carbon in form of tablets or powder. You can check in the next paragraph some recommendations just to make sure you get access to the best choices.
- Choose a clean container (a cup).
- Grind up one or two tablets or put 1 charcoal teaspoon into this container.
- Start adding warm water drop by drop until you notice it is enough.
- Mix it until you form a paste.
- Just apply the mixture directly and gently onto your teeth (DON’T RUB THE MIXTURE ON THEM!).
- Leave activated carbon on your teeth for 3 minutes maximum. It is more than enough to bind with surface stains and plaque.
- Rinse your mouth out numerous times preferably with warm water.
- Brush your teeth with your regular toothpaste.
If your teeth are not sensitive you can apply the method daily, 4 or 5 days in a row. Otherwise, do it daily, just 2 days in a row.
Apply this method once a season if your teeth are not sensitive. Otherwise, once a year sound good.
Buying activated Charcoal?
When it comes to buying a product like activated charcoal, lot of options are available:
- The most common one is the powder. You can utilize it to prepare your teeth whitening remedy or any other medical remedy you will probably need to apply. You can check this top-notch activated charcoal powder on Amazon.
- Another less common but good possibility is charcoal toothpaste. The good thing about it is that you won’t worry about mixing it with anything to whiten your teeth. All you need to do is put some on your toothbrush then brush your teeth properly. Keep in mind that unless it is teeth whitening you won’t be able to use it for the other common medical treatments. You can check this reliable charcoal teeth whitening toothpaste on Amazon.
- Activated charcoal in form of tablets is another shape you can find on online stores. The good thing about it is that you have a little bit more control about the quantity you will use for a single treatment. That is to say, one tablet at a time or maybe two according to your need. You can try these good charcoal tablets on Amazon.
Other common activated charcoal uses
It won’t be fair to talk about the activated amazing teeth whitening benefits without listing its powerful ability in many other medical treatments. In fact, there are dozens of charcoal uses that you may need. Let’s list some of them:
- Treats poisoning: Charcoal plays a huge role removing toxins that may potentially cause poisoning. It is particularly effective when it comes to oral poisoning such as carbamazepine.
- Reduce Alcohol dangers: It is obvious that alcohol is dangerous for the body. Actually, Charcoal helps reducing some of its bad effects by reducing alcohol blood concentration. Of course the best thing you should do is to stop drinking alcohol.
- Skin treatment: if you have a minor injury (little cut), a little skin infection or pain and even a bug bite. You can apply charcoal directly on the place to heal. It will relieve instantly your pain.
- Improves you hair volume: I found in some sources that charcoal may enhance your hair volume which sounds particularly good for women. You may find on the internet and in beauty magazines hair treatments charcoal-based for this kind of use.
- Anti-aging: You already know that charcoal helps remove toxins, especially those directly responsible of cell damage. The latter may cause a premature aging. Thus activated charcoal is a natural anti-aging element
- Cholesterol: Many studies about this subject came up with the same conclusion which is the good activated charcoal ability to reduce bad cholesterol and improve the good cholesterol population.
After learning all these good charcoal benefits. You probably should have one permanently in your home.
Some activated charcoal side effects
Although activated charcoal is a safe mineral for most people, it still has some side-effects you need to be aware of.
Actually, it may cause some digestive system issues in different ways.
This includes vomiting, diarrhea, constipation and black stool. It may also contribute in body dehydration.
If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, basically there is nothing to worry about. Yet, consulting your doctor is always recommended just to make sure you are 100% good to go.
Most of these charcoal side-effects appear for long-term users or those who use it improperly. Short term users are less likely to be affected by any of these side-effects.
The only case in which you probably should not use activated carbon is when you’ve got intestinal obstructions. This may include any blocking or food slow movement through the intestine.
Make activated charcoal Yourself !!
I’ve seen some people who are trying to make activated carbon themselves on their backyard. Probably, the methods they propose seem to be simple. Yet, it involves the use of many chemicals like sulphuric acid (the one use for batteries), nitric acid, hydrochloric acid, zinc chloride, calcium, and potassium.
They treat the combination using heat (up to 900°C) then removing remaining chemicals.
It is hard for me to claim that manipulating those elements with that kind of heat is safe. It seems more to be an invitation for accidents!
That’s why I am not a big fan of making it yourself, even if it is possible and the information is already there.
To put it in a nutshell, Activated Charcoal is a great way not only to whiten and clean your teeth but also to preserve a good oral health. It is very interesting to always have it in your home knowing its ability to be effective for many medical treatments including first aids.
For teeth whitening, use it following the described method for few days once a season. If your teeth are sensitive once or twice a year is more than enough.
Activated charcoal is mostly a safe substance. Yet, you should take note of its side effects. Just to make sure you get the expected results without hurting your body, especially your digestion system.
It is totally possible to produce activated charcoal yourself. But, knowing the risky chemical involved, the unnecessary amount of work you will have to do and its affordable cost in online stores. I see absolutely no need to try it at all.
If you are looking for a much more sophisticated and safe natural teeth whitening approach you can check this natural teeth whitening program that I totally recommend.
Finally, as I’ve said before activated charcoal is not that effective against deeply stained teeth. That’s why you should implement a much more efficient way. For this reason you can check this teeth whitening system.