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A popular trend you may have seen on the internet as of late is people using toothpaste that turns your teeth black. You may be wondering what exactly that could be, as it’s odd to see somebody with black teeth like that. What they’re using is charcoal toothpaste, the next big thing in whitening toothpaste. You may hear charcoal and think that’s quite odd, as we usually use charcoal to grill food among other things. The substance is actually known as activated charcoal, and this is a version of charcoal that has deep cleaning capabilities. 

If you didn’t know, charcoal is created by slow-burning natural materials. These can include wood, coconut shells or even peat. Activated charcoal, on the other hand, is created by heating regular charcoal in the presence of a gas, which causes it to become more porous. This can allow it to absorb and trap toxic chemicals and is actually why it’s been used as an essential medicine for over 150 years.

Because of these properties, it is thought that activated charcoal will detoxify your mouth as well as deep clean your teeth by latching onto bacteria and tarter among other things and stripping them from your mouth. This would then cause you to have a cleaner mouth and whiter teeth. The problem with this is that there is limited evidence that says charcoal toothpaste is any better than other whitening toothpaste. Some studies even say charcoal is no different from other types. As of the moment, we only have anecdotal claims to back up the benefits of charcoal toothpaste, as there is no scientific evidence saying otherwise.

Now you may be wondering; is it safe to put charcoal in my mouth? Due to the fact that it’s been used for medicinal purposes as long as it is, it’s likely not going to harm you too much. Any harmful substances that could have been in it would have been eliminated in the process of creating the activated charcoal. There is one potential side effect from charcoal toothpaste though, and it’s that charcoal is abrasive. This is important to remember because excessive use has the potential to damage your enamel. Try finding charcoal toothpaste with a relative dentin abrasivity level of 250 or less, or alternate it with a fluoride toothpaste. These and others are great ways to make sure you avoid any adverse effects activated charcoal could produce.

Is charcoal toothpaste worth it? That’s likely up to you and how you feel about your enamel and any other potential negatives that come with it. If you’re prone to tooth decay, it may be wise to just stick with regular fluoride toothpaste. Otherwise, take the leap and see for yourself if it works. Learn more about charcoal toothpaste by going here.