The Internet. Most of us have access to it, and many of us use it to find answers to our health issues.
Over the last two years, one thing that has popped up repeatedly on the Internet, and made its way into conventional media and stores, is the idea of using activated charcoal-based dental products to whiten our teeth and ‘detox’ our mouth.
And everyone wants a pristine, white smile.
But at EK Dental Surgery, we’re here today to tell you that charcoal-based toothpaste (or direct application of charcoal to your teeth), is not only an unproven way to whiten your teeth, but it is also probably a destructive one as well.
Why would it work?
It’s not necessarily silly to think charcoal might have a whitening effect, and as far back as Roman times humans have been using charcoal (along with ground up shells and bones), to whiten their teeth.
The logic goes like this – charcoal is very absorbent it has long been used on patients who may have swallowed a potential poison; therefore, it might be able to absorb bacteria and stains on your teeth. Theoretically, the result is whiter, brighter teeth.
Which sounds kind of true, but overlooks the actual dangers of charcoal-based tooth whitening.
The Dangers of Charcoal-Based Teeth Whitening
What the theory above leaves out, is that to the extent that charcoal can remove stains, it does so be being extremely abrasive.
What looks like teeth being whitened is teeth being slowly ground down. Charcoal literally scrubs off the top layer of your teeth; initially making some of them appear whiter.
But when the enamel is ground off your teeth, they become thinner, weaker, and more likely to crack, chip, or develop cavities.
This can also lead to increased tooth sensitivity to differences in temperature.
Worse, the whitening effect is temporary and soon reverses. As enamel thins, the dentin below begins to show through, and that dentin is a yellowish colour.
You end up temporarily trading away surface stains that can be safely treated by EK Dental Surgery in favour of permanently discoloured teeth!
Besides, the porous and abrasive natures of charcoal may block some oral medications and can lead to gum damage and gum disease!
Another danger is that most activated charcoal-based toothpaste (over 90%) doesn’t contain fluoride, one of your most powerful friends in keeping your teeth healthy and shiny.
Until there is a day that there is a scientifically and dentally proven and safe charcoal product to whiten teeth, it is far better to trust your Glen Waverley dentist to make your smile shine with our tried and true whitening techniques!
In the future, it may be possible that there is a safe and tested way to use charcoal to whiten the teeth, but for the moment, it’s better to trust your dentist when it comes to making your smile shine.
Safe Whitening Options with EK Dental Surgery
If you’d like to have white, bright, shiny, teeth, but avoid the discolouration and damage that may result from using a charcoal-based product, don’t worry.
At EK Dental Surgery, we offer multiple safe options for teeth whitening that use gentler and more reliable methods and ingredients.
Plus, our treatments are dentist-approved, meaning their efficacy and safety had been proven over time.
Our main treatments are tooth whitening and porcelain veneers, but if old, ugly fillings are a threat to your smile, we also offer white fillings.
We offer both at-home and in-office tooth whitening. At-home whitening uses custom-designed trays to apply whitening gel, daily, to your teeth.
This takes between one-to-two weeks. In-office whitening uses a whitening gel and special light to whiten your teeth in only one visit to our offices! Both treatments can be expected to whiten your teeth up to 8 shades!
Our porcelain veneers can be used in cases where stains cannot be removed, or in which discolouration is paired to other cosmetic issues such as chips, cracks, or small gaps.
Porcelain veneers are placed over teeth to give them a white, attractive façade.
Finally, we also offer white fillings to treat cavities in a way that is far less apparent when you smile.
To ensure that your teeth remain white for as long as possible, we recommend staying away from foods and drinks that can stain, including wine, coffee, soda, and dark fruits like blueberries.
Reasons to Smile at EK Dental Surgery!
EK Dental Surgery provides a wide variety of preventative, restorative, and cosmetic dental procedures to patients of all kinds!
We are dedicated dentists and staff who provide the best imaginable care. At EK Dental Surgery, we can help you achieve tip-top dental health and a movie-star smile!
EK Dental Surgery is conveniently located on Springvale Road in Glen Waverley.
Special Offer For New Patients
Pay No Gap for Exam, Scale and Clean, and Fluoride Treatment for Medibank, Bupa and HCF.
We are located at 230 Springvale Road in Glen Waverley.